It Starts With Me

My kids LOVE the movie Zootopia! We have watched it several times this summer. The last time we watched it, I was struck by Officer Hopps's speech at the very end of the movie. She speaks about the lesson she learned through the conflict that happened in Zootopia

"When I was a kid, I thought Zootopia was this perfect place, where everyone got along and anyone could be anything. Turns out, real life is a little bit more complicated than a slogan on a bumper sticker. Real life is messy. We all have limitations, we all make mistakes - which means (hey, glass half full!) we all have a lot in common. And the more we try to understand one another, the more exceptional each of us will be. But we have to try. So no matter what type of animal you are, from the biggest elephant to our first fox, I implore you - try. Try to make the world a better place. Look inside yourself and recognize that change starts with you. It starts with me. It starts with all of us."

As I thought about these words, the following verse came to mind: "Here is a simple, rule-of-thumb guide for behavior: Ask yourself what you want people to do for you, then grab the initiative and do it for them" (Matthew 7:12, The Message).
 
Life has been very MESSY recently. But I love how God is revealing what MY responsibility is in that mess. He is asking me to look inside myself, own my mistakes, and treat others the way I want to be treated. Sometimes that means a humble conversation of apology, or loving on a family the way I would want someone to love on my family, or just listening to a friend share where they are in the process. Whatever it is, it starts first with my heart as I seek Him in the mess and respond as He reveals my next right step.  

April is known as the "Baby Whisperer" because she is ALWAYS holding somebody's little one. She loves babies, but more than that, she finds God in caring for others.  Not so long ago, it was she who needed the gift of another's arms to hold a tiny one that she might find rest, and now she loves to give that gift to other new moms.  April also finds Him through fellowship with others. Talking about God, reading his Word, and praying with others helps her to experience Him more fully.  Walking through this life with God and the people He has surrounded her with makes all the difference in the world.