It was round about page 5, I knew this book was going to wreck me. I knew I wasn’t going to have goosebumps from sentimental reflections after completing this book. Rather, I’d be changed in a way that would unravel some of my perceptions and water the roots of others.
Brene’ Brown teaches us through the avenues of research, interviews, and heart belief that we should live out these principles :
1. People are Hard to Hate Close up. Move in.
2. Speak truth to BS. Be Civil.
3. Hold Hands. With Strangers.
4. Strong Back. Soft Front. Wild Heart.
I don’t carry much weight, but, I’d like to see if we can possibly have this recited every morning in homes across America. Seriously! If we all walked out our homes armed with truth and clothed in compassion, things would look a whole lot different than they do right now.
Reading this book caused me to evaluate situations I’ve encountered over the last few years of my life. Disagreements. Relationships. Political views. Burdens. I evaluated everything I was carrying in my “luggage”. I had to admit that there were things I need to let go of – things I needed to unlearn – and things I needed to continue to hold dear and speak about whenever the occasion called for me to do so.
This book also made me reflect on a few other books that I’ve read or am currently reading. It just feels like we all need to take a step back, hunker down in our favorite chairs, open a window, and read. We’re not doing so well at having meaningful conversations on social media when it comes to hard topics. But, maybe – just maybe – if we were all reading the same things, we could come together afterwards and draw from one another’s experiences and perspectives with a desire to understand rather than be understood.
Might I propose that these gems should be required reading for every human? Wouldn’t the wonder of Meg and Charles Wallace combined with the knowledge of our varying personalities, the statistics of research and the power of vulnerability create a spectacular revival of human compassion? It would be GRAND, I tell you!
Perhaps, this is a rather audacious hope and thought. Perhaps, required reading would threaten one of our greatest blessings – freedom. And – perhaps , the change that is happening in my own heart because of these books and because of my relationship with God – is enough to spark a personal revival . And perhaps , that’s enough. If each of us as humans , committed to filling our hearts and minds with books that compel us to apologize, forgive, listen , and wonder …. perhaps , the world could change. From books to hearts – may it be so. May it be so.