By Marsha M. Brown
Based on the title, the natural assumption will be that this column is sappy or ‘ooey gooey’ but au contraire! It is though based on truth as I know it!
‘Love’ is a four-letter word that not many of us speak often except and only to those very close to our heart. In my case, I say it often…not because it makes me any more special or endearing than anyone else, but rather because I truly mean it…even to strangers that I will likely never meet…but there are all kinds of love in this world…not just for spouses, children, parents and friends but for things such as our first or fanciest vehicle; for that first baby doll or stuffed monkey…the one that looks tattered and worn with hair and eyeballs missing and stitches coming loose…the one we held close to our heart growing up…the one that laid there motionless on our pillow, yet seemed to listen to our ‘talks’ and absorb salty tears when we were sad about something. Sometimes love has to do with a place…maybe a vacation spot that was our ‘happy’ place when memories of the kids and fun times bring us smiles no matter how faded the pictures have become…or maybe on a boat where we shared countless hours tying bait or mending nets with our Daddy or ‘Pop’ but…for most of us, home is our happiest place overall and where we want to be with those we love who love us back. Then, there’s the kind of love that binds us as a country and nations together…the kind of love for all mankind…that wants happiness, success, prosperity and peace across oceans, mountain tops…you know…”over the river and through the woods” kind of love…the kind that makes us united, when we stand together to help the oppressed…the men, women and children gravely affected by catastrophes and hardship…and war. When bad, bad things happen even to strangers the true American spirit wants them to be okay…restored…back on their feet with hope and courage to move ahead and never look back…and another kind of love too…a patriotic love…an adoration for symbols and customs we hold (or used to) so dear…our beautiful American flag…our Statue of Liberty…our White House…military icons spread across our land – statues that remind us of leadership, courage, sacrifice, adversity, suffering and mistakes too…yet eventual resolve…an end to misery, tyranny and suppression.
And yes, another ginormous love that sadly many cannot see all around them, feel, or accept. This love surpasses all understanding even considering its basis, history, and continual influence around the world – even despite what rails against it…that is God’s love.
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When you read at the closing of my weekly ‘GIG LINE’ that I love you all, I do that not because its ‘cute’ or that I am trying to get a rise out of you but because God inspired me to love everyone with all my heart way back in the early 70’s. My mother had just gone through a terrible time…though she was valued and respected by her clients and through no fault of her own, she had lost her job. It was obvious that someone else wanted and sought her manager position and it broke her heart into a million pieces…very shortly after, she found out her father had terminal cancer who died soon after. I took it hard…the fact she was rejected as a respected professional in the way she was having been praised and referred countless times by her happy and faithful clients, it hurt my heart deeply for her. Then one night the Lord who had been in my heart from childhood came into my heart again in a different and very robust way and when His presence and love poured in for me, it influenced my genuine love outwardly for others…and it soothed the hurt allowing my heart to forgive those who had hurt someone I loved so much…an experience I will never forget.
My life is full of blessings, I had parents who gave me love, affection, guidance and discipline every child needs and deserves; a patriot husband who showed me not only what real love between a man and a woman means but who inspired within me his incredible love for our country and those brothers and sisters who served to keep it ”safe and secure from all alarms…” as the remarkable hymn lyrics tell us.
Here we are only days away from Thanksgiving 2020. Memories of all our previous celebrations will come to mind as many of us unfortunately keep our distance from each other…a first, not by choice and hopefully the last time. The delicious meal we look forward to sharing every year: turkey, ham, or prime rib with all the fixings will not be the same without everyone together or visiting from house to house for that last yummy dessert with family and friends. Still in all, we have much to be thankful for. Our flag is still as beautiful as ever; we still live in the greatest country on earth and once things get back to normal, hopefully…we will cherish even more what we have had and have too often taken for granted.
Thank the good Lord for the vaccines that are in the works and the measures that were taken on behalf of President Trump, his task force and Warp Speed, scientists, researchers and medical personnel to expedite their scrutiny and production. Some folks will undoubtedly refuse to give him any credit at all and continue to criticize but so be it. And speaking of President Trump, I am so happy that he reversed the decision to cancel the annual, memorable event ‘Wreaths Across America’ at Arlington National Cemetery on December 19, 2020. To be fair, concerns for safety and avoidance of COVID-19 is what prompted the initial cancelation, however, with extensive efforts to avoid exposure, and with meeting safety and local regulations…I understand this beautiful acknowledgement and show of gratitude for our fallen heroes will take place as planned.
Until next time, please be happy, safe, and proud. Take care of yourselves, love like you have never loved before and forgive those who have hurt you. Reach out to old friends, family members you might have been at odds with…and be thankful you have been in each other’s life; help a veteran if you know one who is in need of anything…including friendship or a plate of goodies to be left at his/her door. Think about life and the fact you are here and a blessing to us all, because ALL life without exception is precious. God is good and He is only a prayer away. Please call cell: (252) 202-2058 or email me: email@example.com or call our very dedicated Dare County Veteran’s Service Officer, Patty O’Sullivan: (252) 475-5604 or email her at: firstname.lastname@example.org As always, I love you all with all of my heart. God bless you. Stay tuned.