In the long journey from the moment I lost the gift of my partner to AIDS to the present, I have come to the realization of the gift of his life and his death. In the least, for me, I have to say it simply, “I have loved.” Nothing has illustrated this as succinctly as a cycle of music titled “When We No Longer Touch.” If you read the background about this music you may begin to realize what I have learned. What I learned from him and others like him is this: we can make of our lives to others a gift from our hearts – we have that choice. The composer was facing his own death because of AIDS. What he decided to do was write his own requiem and in the process, he wrote something that has touched thousands of lives. The lyrics are based on the six phases of grief: Denial Anger Bargaining Depression Acceptance Hope and then the composer included the text from the Latin requiem mass. For me, along with helping me re-visit how I went through those phases after losing my partner, the composer also creates a thing of sheer beauty. After starting on a journey of self exploration that has come to my current point of striving for personal authenticity, I am in this place of being weary of being angry, hateful, and sometimes scared when I look at the world around me. I realized three basic things:

  1. Others are surely feeling the way I do – I’m not unique in my anxiety and my anger when I see all the injustice in the world.
  2. There are people in the world who are much better prepared to deal with the injustices and teach the Gospel and spread the Good News; standing on the street corner and protesting those who proclaim God’s word is “hatred” when necessary.
  3. God is ultimately in control and He has given me a specific task.

I believe I have finally come to a personal assurance of that task. I believe that in this crazy world, there need to be oases of calm and peace. There need to be places to take refuge from the storm. That rest is found in the Lord. I feel that with the help of the Spirit to guide me, I will try to provide some refuge. I hope to spread this art – my music and poetry – as far and wide as possible. Where does one start? Well that is another story for another post.

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