Life is like a blank page.
It can be filled with a list of things that we accomplished or have yet to do.
It can be a novel relating a story with grand themes.
It can be a limerick, short, quick and witty or an elegant poem.
It can be a journal with deeply felt emotions.
It can be a random collection of written observations with no apparent connection.
It can be filled with water colored lilies, acrylic hillsides, or an oil based life size portrait of a loved one.
It can contain or scratch throughs, our mistakes, and aborted stops and starts.
But the one thing a blank page is not meant to do is to remain blank.
A blank page is boring, incomplete, and remains that way until we chose to act.
How will you chose to fill your pages today?
As a auto claims adjuster I often hear the phrase, “It was just an accident” from the at-fault party.
The person saying this is indicating that there was no intent to harm behind their actions. Or that the harmed party is making a bid deal out of nothing.
They are making excuses and deflecting responsibility for their behavior.
This excuse mentality is ingrained in us from childhood. A simple apology, often forced, and we go on our way.
But it doesn’t work this way as an adult. As an adult our words and actions have consequences.
We need to take responsibility for our actions whether they are intentional or accidental.
We need to quit minimizing the damage we have done to others.
When I was fifteen years old a victim of a sexual assault knocked on my front door. She was battered and beaten. Blackened eyes, bloody lips, and barely able to make enough eye contact to ask for help. Forty two years later I still can’t get the image out of my mind.
I cannot understand why anyone would sexually assault or strike a woman. There is nothing that any woman could have ever done to justify such egregious behavior.
Yet society makes excuses for the perpetrators of these actions. They allege that the perpetrator is simply misunderstood. They then paint the victim as a temptress or instigator who got what they deserved.
Often these violent men express no guilt or shame for their behavior.
But the innocent victim is often shamed and questioned about the events that led to the assault. The victim’s character is put on trial.
Is it any wonder that violence against women is so under reported?
As men, we have failed to protect our sisters, our daughters and others.
We have turned a blind eye to bruising and the woman who is “perpetually clumsy” and falling down stairs.
It’s time for men to take an active roll in stopping violence against women.
It’s time that we spoke up to other men and let them know it’s unacceptable to strike a woman.
It’s time that we believed a woman the first time she reports an abuse and quit questioning her character.
It’s time for men to financially support women’s shelters.
It’s time for men to treat women with the dignity they deserve.
Our society loves fixer-uppers.
There are TV shows dedicated to purchasing run-down houses and restoring them or recreating them into something completely different.
There are shows dedicated to finding stuff at flea markets and flipping it into something of value.
Why are these shows so popular?
Maybe we are hoping to learn how to recognize the inherent worth of something we have devalued.
Maybe, we are hoping that a dumpster diver will recognize our value and rescue us.
Some of us have been devalued so long that we have begun to believe that we are worthless.
After much effort we have come to the conclusion that we are incapable of rescuing ourselves.
But God knows our value. We were created in His image. What He values, He will restore.
Where we see imperfection, He sees a distressed look in need of His touch.
He can bring beauty from ashes and it brings Him great joy to do this in our lives.