Light in Hard Times

Me and 3 Friends, Elite Look of the Year, Paris 1989

Sometimes our light goes out but is blown into flame by another human being. Each of us owes deepest thanks to those who have rekindled this light. – Albert Schweitzer

 

This past week has been a tough one for the world. The events in Paris, France, specifically, are shocking and raise questions–everything from why to how to why would I ever leave my bubble / house / small town in safe America again. I’ve heard the fearful question repeated over and over again in the past few days. “Why would I want to travel, to risk myself and my life to see and experience other things when this could happen?” It’s a good question.

Me and 3 Friends, Elite Look of the Year, Paris 1989
My first visit to Paris, Elite Look of the Year, 1989

42

Later this week, I turn 42. 42! I think. Wow, how has that happened? And then I think of all I have gotten to do in my life, all the places I’ve been able to see, the people I’ve had the privilege to walk alongside, and my three (wonderful) sons, and I count my blessings. It’s a long list of things to be thankful for, and the thing is, I wouldn’t trade a single day of any of these years. I wouldn’t go back. Only forward. 42 is a celebration!

At the Trocadéro, Paris 1989
At the Trocadéro, Paris 1989

One thing I find myself doing especially as the year comes to a close and I add another candle to my birthday cake, is taking stock of the year. What doors have opened? What doors have closed? What doors have I decided to walk through and as a result become a better version of myself? What friends have come close and shared this year with me? How is my life different, better? How could it be improved?

When I look back, I know it is the people and experiences — the travel, the dinners and shared coffees, the laughter, the tears — these are the things I treasure most.

Jennifer Lyn King

Light in Hard Times

The older I get, the more I realize the people we surround ourselves with either build us up and help us come more alive or tear us down and destroy us piece by piece. The people we go through this life with are key. If Paris is any reminder, we don’t have days, months, and years to spend being torn down. We should run from those things which destroy our lives. Then, we are more intact to be our best and to help shine a light to help others.

I love the buildings worldwide which have been lit in the colors of the French flag to help support those in Paris. What is it about the lights in Sydney, Jerusalem, Norway, Rio, London, Berlin, and New York City? When we support each other, even from afar, we are strengthened.

That is the goal, I think, for life … to serve and help and give and strengthen, and then when it is our turn to take a leap, to fly.

Sometimes our light goes out but is blown into flame by another human being. Each of us owes deepest thanks to those who have rekindled this light. – Albert Schweitzer

Thank you to those who have helped me to rekindle my own light in this year. Light in hard times makes all the difference.

More favorite words from Albert Schweitzer:

The only ones among you who will be really happy are those who will have sought and found how to serve.

Constant kindness can accomplish much. As the sun makes ice melt, kindness causes misunderstanding, mistrust, and hostility to evaporate.

Example is not the main thing in influencing others. It is the only thing.

One who gains strength by overcoming obstacles possesses the only strength which can overcome adversity.

Published by Jennifer Lyn Art

About Jennifer Writer Author Photographer Artist Corporate Marketer Happy Wife & Mom World Traveler Grateful.

6 thoughts on “Light in Hard Times

  1. Love the Schweitzer quotes you chose. They really embody how I try to live and what I try to instill in my daughters.
    It is often a challenge to be that example…my daughters have made me work toward being a better person. They opened up a world to me I would have never known. Blessings on your upcoming birthday!

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  2. “The older I get, the more I realize the people we surround ourselves with either build us up and help us come more alive or tear us down and destroy us piece by piece. ” I love this. I’m nearing 50, and this has become more and more clear to me all through my 40s. I can choose how I spend my time and with whom, and that has made all the difference.

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  3. Great quotes from a true humanitarian.

    Paris is one of my favorite cities. We were just there in July.

    It is worrisome that terrorism is casting such a wide and tragic shadow over the world. There is tension and worry in Vienna, as well as other countries like Belgian and England, that they will also be targets. Euronews is full of nothing but reports of threats and attacks.

    So it’s even more important that we keep Albert Schweitzer’s wise and loving words in our minds and hearts. Thanks for being one of those people who is keeping his light alive.

    Have the happiest of birthdays with many, many joyful returns of the day !

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    1. Hi Barbara, Paris is heartbreaking, and you’re right about the other cities to watch. I’m glad you connected with Schweitzer’s quote — one of the churches we went to in Prague which was over 1000 years old had a plaque that said Albert Schweitzer used to play the organ there. That was when I started paying attention to quotes I found from him. Thank you for the birthday wishes and for making the time to write. Happiest of Thanksgivings to you!

      Like

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