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Friday, December 5, 2014

Hope and Love

I woke up a little grouchy this morning. Let me explain...The central heat in our house is either on 'blowtorch' or off, regardless of the setting on the thermostat. There is no middle ground. The vents are in the ceiling and conveniently blow directly on me, no matter where I am standing, sitting or sleeping. It just works out that way. I have even closed the vents and covered some of them with those little magnetic covers, to no avail. The hot, dry heat seeks me out.

Kevin and I lived in Rancho Santa Margarita CA for 20+ years and used the heat in the house twice, as I recall. We did have a wood-burning fireplace in the family room, which we used frequently, but there was sufficient heat from the fireplace that wafted upstairs to keep us warm at night all winter.

While living in Klamath Falls OR it was a necessity to run the heater during the late fall, winter and early spring. We usually had our first snowfall in mid-September and it ALWAYS snowed on Memorial Day. The vents were located on the floor in that house, which made much more sense and kept the house very comfortable.

It's been a little chilly at night here in Carson City, so I have been setting the thermostat to 64 degrees at night. Personally, I'd leave the heat completely off, but Kevin and Bridget the Yorkie do get a little cold when the outside temps drop into the 20s and 30s, in spite of the electric blanket on the bed. I don't use the electric blanket- thank goodness for dual controls!

OK that's the back, Kevin got up at the ungodly hour of 5:30AM. He's an, "early-to-bed, early-to-rise" kind of guy. I'm a, "stay-up-late-reading, sleep-in-as-long-as-I-can-get-away-with-it" kind of girl. Hey, it's worked for 34 years...anyhow, apparently, it was extremely cold this morning when Kevin got up, so naturally, he turned the thermostat up. By the time 5:50AM rolled around, I couldn't stand it anymore, so I stormed out to the kitchen, with sweat dripping down my brow, to get a cup of coffee. I probably should have gone to bed before 1AM, but I was reading.

I opened the newspaper and because I was in a very grouchy mood, I immediately got tears in my eyes when I saw the daily 'cartoon'. It wasn't funny at all. It depicted a police officer, all in black, in riot gear and a body camera on his jacket, with a billy club raised over a person who was cowering in his grasp. The officer said, "Say Cheese!" The title of the cartoon was, "How body cameras will make a difference'.

 I am getting very tired of the police being characterized as jack booted thugs who beat and kill innocent people for no reason. The overwhelming majority of those who work in law enforcement want to make our world a better place. They want to protect us and keep us safe.

I realize that recent events in our country have stirred up strong emotions about racism, the justice system and police tactics. I get it. Yes, you have the right to protest. I don't think that burning police cars, shooting guns, and looting stores are the way to get your point across to the nation. Yes, there are those who work in law enforcement who commit crimes and need to be held accountable for those crimes. There are some things that need to change. Tarring all law enforcement with the brush of thuggery and the glee of the media in doing so is not the way to change the system. Why would anyone in their right mind want to go into law enforcement? Is that the point of all this? NO law enforcement? Where would that leave us? Hopeless?

I thought about the hashtags that are plastered all over social media. I wish they said, "all lives matter."
As tears of frustration and sadness gather in my eyes, I am not ready to give in to anger. I must continue to believe in the inherent goodness of man. We are made in the likeness and image of God, after all. God is goodness and love- and love never ends.

The season of Advent is a time of great hope. We wait to commemorate the birth of Jesus Christ and we wait for when He will come again. This Advent season, I pray that the national conversation will change from anger to calm.  Like my thermostat, we have to turn down the heat a little and re-direct the vents. Let's not continue judge any group of people by race, political party OR profession. I know some of us run hotter than others, but I pray that we will move forward as people of hope...and love.

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