Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Are You Feeling the Love?

I bet the LAST person you thought who would be talking about Michael Jackson would be me, right? Yeah, me too. I mean, I get it... he was a musical genius and forever a legend. But I must confess I was so OVER it and him practically a day after he died. The media, as they so often do, was getting on my nerves with all their non-stop coverage and continual play of EVERY SINGLE VIDEO the man ever made. I guess I was a little angry too that he was stealing Farrah's spotlight after her long fight with cancer. Then I caught some of his memorial service on the web...

I probably wouldn't have started watching it if Brooke Shields had not been speaking when I tuned in. I don't know why, but I've always admired her ever since I was a little girl. I listened as she spoke of a dear friend and honored him, choking back her tears, by reading an excerpt of one of my favorite books, "The Little Prince." It hit me then that no matter what we may have been coerced into believing about this most tormented and gifted soul, the bottom line is that there lying for all the world to see was a child of God, taken entirely too soon, surrounded by the grieving left behind who loved him. Then it became really real for me.

There was a mother, whose grief I could not imagine, facing a task that should never had to be made by a parent. There were brothers and sisters, whose pain I can empathize with, watching the life of their own flesh and blood, flash upon a screen for all to see, knowing that he had so much more life to live. There were his children, faced with the hard reality of life way too soon, and having the end of their innocence marked forever by June 25, 2009.

There were many renowned speakers with so many wonderful words to say about a man who lived in controversy until the day he died. My hope is that Michael Jackson knew how these people felt about him, how they respected and supported him, through it all. I also hope that his soul is finally at peace with the Lord, who one speaker reminded the family, IS our Shepherd. Thank God for that.

For all the wonderful music that he gave us that will be eternal, and for all the great things he did as a humanitarian, I applaud him. But the gift that he gave to me in his death was eye-opening. Death is the great equalizer. We are all the same. We are born, we live, and yes, we will all eventually die. We are all given opportunities and talents and wonderful friends and family to share our lives with, no matter how much or how little time we are given. The most important thing we can do is to tell those that we love that we do. Tomorrow is not promised, so tell someone if you're thankful for them, that you're proud of them, or that you ARE really sorry. The bible tells us that love never fails and, truly, it is the only things that lasts and inevitably transcends time. Thanks, M.J., for helping me feel the love. Now let's all pass it on.

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