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Superstitions, Struggles, Love, and The Search for Peace

September 10, 2012

Back in May I was making my way towards my gate in the Louis Armstrong International Airport in New Orleans when I strolled into a newsstand.  I needed to pick up some supplies for the flight.  I selected some cinnamon gum, some new headphones for my iPhone, and a Sports Illustrated magazine.  For as long as I can remember, every time that I fly I pick up a copy of the magazine.  Yes, I was a baseball player all through high school, yes I had superstitions, and yes maybe this is an old one.

Would I be afraid to fly without an SI? No, I wouldn’t.  However, I love the photos, I get lost in an article every time.  And call me shallow or silly, but in all the times that I have flown with a copy of Sports Illustrated it’s been a nice flight.  Could you say that the weekly sports magazine gives me a nugget of peace?

On the cover of this issue was a picture of the recently deceased Junior Seau, who has died because of a self-inflicted gunshot wound in an apparent suicide.  In the corresponding article, written by Jim Trotter, was a line that has stuck with me.  The part was a quote from former teammate Rodney Harrison.

“He would tell me the only time he truly felt at peace was when he was with his children or in the surf.” the author would go on to say “junior was always searching for peace”

Always searching for peace…  Wow, what an interesting comment on a common thread that seems so common in at least western humanity.  This is a quote that can be heard coming from a minimum wage fry cook, a middle-class boutique owner, or a millionaire pro athlete.

The article talked about all of the good things that Seau did for his community.  How he remained very much a hometown boy that didn’t let the money or fame change him as much as we would think it could or should.  He seemed a man that understood grace as proven by his example of giving it.  Still, no matter the accomplishments on the field or the giving back what he could to those in need… There was always a search for peace.

I must also add that also mentioned was the current issue of trends of depression in former NFL players due to repeated hits to the head and the stress that it’s causing on the brain.  I’m not here to write about that, or overlook it… But in my opinion the lack of peace was the saddest thing that led to the loss that was suffered by family and friends.

Hundreds of surfers pay tribute to Seau in a paddle out. Honoring his memory in one of the few places he found peace. Photo courtesy of surfertoday.com

So at the end of the day, is peace one of the greatest gifts or treasures that we can ever wish for?

It is a subject of poetry, songs, art… It is a common character in advertising, letting us know that if we buy this or go there that we will find it…  And for some it is the most elusive of feelings, found only in moments that flit by too fast.

As one that has been a searcher for peace, I am far from an expert on finding it; but I have tried to learn from my hunts in the past.  What if have discovered over my searches is that a) when I look too hard for it… I never find it and b) it is easy to mistake power, money, fame, or in-authentic happiness for peace.

It wasn’t until I began to realize those things that I realized while the search isn’t always easy; I was capable of making the search more difficult than it should be.

The more that I have learned about unconditional love the more I have learned about peace.  The more that I have learned that I am loved unconditionally; the more that I have learned to feel peace. The more that I have learned about letting go of the things that get in the way of unconditional love, the more I have learned about accepting peace.  The more that I have learned about acting with unconditional love, the more that I have learned to see peace be shared others.

In my journeys, in my story, those lessons have come because of a relationship with my Creator.  In my times of working to draw close to my relationship with God is when those moments of beautiful, still peace and quiet joy have been found.

And yes, as with any relationship, it is hard work.  Learning about unconditional love has never been promised to us to be an easy lesson.  Oh but it’s a treasure that is worth breaking out a shovel and digging for!

This question about finding peace… I know that this is a subject that has had millions of words given to trying to find an answer.  I’m no expert… I’m just a guy that tries his best for my son, my friends, and the young people I serve… I’m sure I will spend some more words on them again in these pages…

I hope these few words help some. I assure you that peace can be found, in love and with hope and faith. And since you are loved, it’s never, I promise never as far as you think it may be. Ask for help if you need it… Let yourself be loved… And work to learn more about how to let it be part of who you are…

May peace find you tonight
like a breeze through your window,
sit by your light.
Let it warm by your fire,
and laugh with delight.
Like a heavenly choir
may peace find you tonight– Reckless Kelly (you won’t be disappointed if you look it up)

God’s Peace

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From → Spirituality

One Comment
  1. Just wanted to say you have a great site and thanks for posting!…

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