Sunday Inspiration: What We See

26-what-we-seeLast night I saw another flag at half mast, and my first thought? We might as well just leave it that way. There will be another mass killing soon enough.

At what point did cruel, crazy people shooting down innocents begin to seem routine? At what point did our leaders throw up their hands and refuse to do anything about gun violence other than pass along prayers and condolences?

Just when things seemed darker and darker, I read a column by Nicholas Kristof titled “In 5 Minutes, He Lets the Blind See.” A doctor who has restored eyesight to more than 100,000 people is literally bringing light back into the world. Dr. Sanduk Ruit is a Napali ophthalmologist who has developed a 5-minute procedure that removes cataracts from poor people who would normally be blind for the rest of their lives. What an incredible gift to give.

How blind are we to all the goodness that surrounds us? Our headlines scream about terorrism, and murder, but we seldom hear about or talk about or even think about those many people who show compassion and kindness, those who seek to bring about justice and peace. We are frightened, and so we forget.

So now let’s think about this. Good, courageous everyday heroes are all around us. Not just dedicated doctors and committed peace makers, but our families and friends, neighbors and co-workers,who are constantly helping others in so many ways, large and small. They are paying attention to the sixteen feet around them and finding ways that make a real difference.

Perhaps we need someone to restore our vision so we see and remember the ocean of caring, concerned, loving people of all religions and not the shallow, murky puddle of those who feed off the fear and pain of others.

What we see does depend on what we look for, and I invite you during this holiday season to see the goodness and love that surrounds us and celebrate it with joy.


  1. Terry Guerra on December 6, 2015 at 3:22 am


    That last line says it all – “…see the goodness and love that surrounds us and celebrate it with joy.” This is what I’m going to do. I hope a lot of people will.

  2. Edythe(Edie) on December 6, 2015 at 9:45 am

    How beautiful a statement that you just made. People should focus on the good that is done and not the horrific. Shakespeare once said, “The evil that men do lives after them, the good is oft interred with their bones”. What you wrote for inspiration should be heeded by all.

  3. Pamela Feinberg on December 6, 2015 at 11:46 am

    Thank you Emilie for opening our eyes so we can open our hearts.

  4. Carolyn K davis on December 6, 2015 at 7:57 pm

    I hope that, because of your young age, you have not missed the writings of Elizabeth Goudge. I think you have something in common with her.
    She was gentle and peaceable. Also, spiritual.

    I cannot find where to ask you questions.

    • Emilie Richards on December 7, 2015 at 12:39 pm

      I have missed her. I’ll look for her work. Where should I start, Carolyn? And you can always email me at emilie @ emilierichards .com (without the spaces, which are here today to keep spammers from picking this up.) On my website there’s a Contact form, too, on the far right at the top. You can always reach me that way.

  5. Marsha Markham (from Medford, OR) on December 6, 2015 at 9:18 pm

    This is so true…the prince of darkness wants us only to see the bleak, awful things of the world. While there are many, there are many more uplifting things, when we open our eyes and hearts to them.
    Recently someone posted a piece by Fred Rogers where he mentioned his mother. When bad things happen, she said to her young son, focus on those who are rushing in to help. Let us each try to be the ones who love, comfort and make a difference to those around us…to give each other courage.

  6. Edie Newman on December 6, 2015 at 9:40 pm

    Your Sunday e-mail this morning was so true and so touching. There are lots of good people in this world who do good things. Unfortunately the worst things like bombings, shootings, mass killings, ISIS related terrorism, etc. all get publicized. Shakespeare once said, “The evil that men do lives after them, the good is oft interred with their bones”. This should not be true. Let’s celebrate the good and honor them. Play it forward.

  7. Fran currier on December 6, 2015 at 10:53 pm

    I still believe there are still many mire good people than bad. What a world it would be if everyone treated everybody with kindness!!!

    • Jan Warren on December 7, 2015 at 12:55 am

      I agree Fran. Kindness can be such a day brightened.

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