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This World is Broken

Erika Petrelli
Erika Petrelli

This world is broken, but Erika is keeping an open heart with a focus on love

I can’t write about France. I can’t write about Beirut. I can’t write about the young mother in Indianapolis who was gunned down during an early morning home invasion last week. I can’t write about my increasing incredulity that so many in our country are still taking Donald Trump seriously as a candidate. I can’t write about the Russian plane crash in Egypt. I can’t write about Syria. I can’t write about the stories of tragedy that spill over the tops of the pages on every online news and social media site, both at the local level and at the international level. I can’t write about Starbucks and why anyone would possibly choose to focus on their red cups as some kind of assault against Christianity. I can’t write about how out of control gun violence is in our country. This world is broken...

This world is broken, and I can’t write about it because if I write about it I would just be adding my thoughts to the cacophony of opinions flooding the wires. Opinions swarming with people who are convinced of their rightness, hateful in their declaration of who should be villainized, and misguided in their assumption of facts.

It’s impossible to pick apart the truth amidst all the noise.

The events of the world have us so divided, each of us choosing a side and planting our feet deeply—so deeply that it sometimes seems like there is no hope of movement.

Next week is Thanksgiving. A time of gratitude and giving thanks. An opportunity for focusing on abundance and appreciation for what we have.

My wish, as we head into this season, is that we stop spending our time being all right and mighty, and instead spend our time being all open and humble.  My wish is that we would listen more and think more and DECLARE less. My wish is that we would reach our hands across the aisles and shake the hands of those we most fervently disagree with. My wish is that we would stop posting “Ha, HA! Take THAT, Obama/Fox News/Starbucks/Gwyneth Paltrow/fill-in-evil-doer-of-your-choice” on our media feeds, gleeful in our gotcha.

Because this world is broken. And while I don’t know exactly what we need to do to fix it, I’m pretty sure that our declaration of our rightness is not going to do it. What has healed the world before? I know that at the very least it requires a hearty amount of love and forgiveness and reconciliation. I know it requires a willingness to see a different perspective. I know it requires work, not just talk.

So as we enter this season of giving and thanks, I am going to take a bit of classic Covey advice to Seek First To Understand, Then Be Understood. I am going to try and stay open and humble.  I am going to focus on loving and keeping an open heart. I am going to quiet down the cacophony so I can listen for the truth.

How can you be open and humble in the midst of this broken world?


Interested in having Erika’s blog come directly to your e-mail each Tuesday? Have comments to share?  E-mail her at erika@tlpnyc.com.   Find all her previous blog posts at www.tlpnyc.com/author/erika

Erika Petrelli

By Erika Petrelli

Erika Petrelli is the Senior Vice President of Leadership Development (and self-declared Minister of Mischief) for The Leadership Program, a New York City-based organization. With a Masters degree in Secondary Education, Erika has been in the field of teaching and training for decades, and has been with The Leadership Program since 1999. There she has the opportunity to nurture the individual leadership spirit in both students and adults across the country, through training, coaching, keynotes, and writing. The legacy Erika strives daily to create is to be the runway upon which others take flight. If you enjoy these blogs, you should check out her interactive journal, On Wings & Whimsy: Finding the Extraordinary Within the Ordinary, now available for sale on Amazon. While her work takes her all around the country, Erika calls Indiana home.