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Rosie’s Devotions – Unsung Heroes

Isn’t it funny how we remember the bad times, the bad news, and the bad people who have affected our lives by what they have done and continue to do? 

Every day, television, newspapers and especially the internet, scream out tragedies, horrific devastation, and suffering and our minds are automatically drawn to such events.

But what about the good times, the good news, and the good people who have affected our lives and the lives of others by their good deeds and actions — the unsung heroes whom we don’t hear about — people who change the world for good and continue to take a stand for what is righteous and true.

Let us think, for example, about the fire fighters, the search and rescue personnel, and the police, the heroic men and women who risk and sometimes sacrifice their lives, so that we can live in safety and peace.

Let us remember the Doctors, Nurses, health care teams, personal support workers, teachers and all front line workers, who have been putting their lives at risk because of this unseen killer virus that is infecting and has killed millions of people for over one year now. 

John 3:16For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. (NIV)

But may we also not  forget the greatest sacrifice of all time: God the Father, Who sacrificed His Son Jesus to suffer and die on the cross for the sins of the whole world. Jesus, who taught and brought about much needed change in this world. Jesus, who took a stand against unrighteousness.

For all of us.

For you and me.

You are the change that is needed today. Let’s make sure that the praises of our risen Hero are sung today, tomorrow and the future yet to come!

Prayer: Lord God, thank You for moving within the hearts of unsung heroes. Continue to move within each and every one of us so that we may give compassion to those who need compassion, bring peace to those who are in turmoil, render aid to those in need, and share the good news of forgiveness and eternal life that You offer as a free gift to all people. Amen.

Rosemary Hagedorn, Midland,

rosyhagedorn@gmail.com

Five Principles that Need to be Taught to Young People

At all ages, young people may be the subject of mean behaviours from others. We see it on the playground: the process whereby some children systematically shut others out, not allowing them to join in the group. This issue is seen through all grade levels. We need to increase our own, and our children’s awareness about what is really going on. The damage that can be done to another’s self-esteem can be more severe and long lasting than a physical injury.

I have worked with many adults who still feel the intense pain that they experienced at the hands of insensitive peers. As parents, we teach our children how to be gentle with animals, and how to handle fragile items with care, but because the feelings of others are less visible, teaching about honoring others is often overlooked.

 Children may not be exposed to good models of behavior that respects others, or worse, may be repeatedly observing disrespectful communications in the home between parents, between parents and children, or between siblings.

We need to understand, and to teach some basic principles including the following:

1) All people have value, regardless of their skills, abilities, dress, possessions, language or culture,

2) Judging others produces distance and pain

3) Saying or doing hurtful things diminishes us more than the one we hurt,

4) It is never O.K. to be deliberately hurtful; there is always a peaceful way to make our point

5) We are here to help and support one another. 

These are very simple principles, but if we could practice them consistently in all areas of our lives, the results would be profound. A person can have all the intelligence, skill or money in the world, but without an understanding of these principles they cannot have peace or happiness. Perhaps we need less focus on discipline (although it cannot be ignored), and a stronger focus on teaching positive values.

Of course, this begins in the home, and children can be taught from an early age to avoid behaviors that are damaging to others. If they are old enough to learn to be gentle with the flowers in the garden, they are old enough to be gentle with others. If they see others stomping on flowers however, they may model that. Similarly, it doesn’t work to teach them to be kind to others, if they observe us stomping on the feelings of others (or theirs).  

As parents, we must begin to monitor our own behaviors, and if we would not be comfortable saying or doing something in the middle of the school playground, then perhaps we shouldn’t be doing or saying it at home. We can begin modeling kindness to others even if it is not reciprocated, because change has to begin somewhere.

 Gwen Randall-Young is an author and award-winning psychologist. For permission to reprint this article, or to obtain books, CDs or MP3s, visit www.gwen.ca. Follow Gwen on Facebook for daily inspiration.