Some of the most memorable people I’ve met on the road of life whose existences have lodged in my mind and spirit have a few notable traits.
There are those who’ve loved me no matter what I’ve said, what I’ve done or who I am. They’ve simply showed me acceptance, kindness, grace and expected nothing in return.
I also remember those who have hurt me, who I could never seem to please, who judged me harshly, spoke to me rashly and discarded me when there was nothing else I could do for them.
Others have imprinted their gentleness upon my soul. By soft-spoken and tender lives they taught me more about what it is to be good and holy than all the books I’ve read, sermons I’ve heard.
There are also ones who’ve stomped all over life’s path, raised a ruckus, overpowered, controlled, manipulated and coerced me and everyone in their path to create and sustain their version of reality.
Perhaps the fellow travelers who’ve inspired and challenged me the most are those who’ve let go, stopped struggling, understood how not to cling to life’s illusive treasures. I’ve witnessed them sacrifice time, treasures and talents to benefit others. I’ve sat by them as they allowed others to receive the praise due them. I’ve heard them take blame, accept criticism and move aside so as to engender peace, stop the fighting and be the one to show love in difficult and unjust circumstances. I’ve been by their bedside as they let go of this life because it was their time, their moment to journey to the other side.
Life is either simple and we make it complicated or complicated but lived with simplicity.