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The land of strong Opinions

I love to vote on election day. I love standing in line. I love witnessing so many people who care and want to exercise their right to vote.

John and I always like to make it a date. Make it a special day. Yesterday it was extra special because we got to have our 18-year-old twins share the date. I also know that my son Nicholas was voting in Utah.

Our children's decision to care about who our next president makes me proud. Proud that the new generation feels like their vote is important. That their opinion matters.

This has been a year with a lot of different opinions and I am seeing a trend that people are threatened by differing opinions.

I have trained my brain to not be threated by other people's opinions. I love when people have strong convictions and have the courage to share them. You shouldn't be threatened by people's opinions. You should be thankful for them and applaud their courage.

People having different opinions isn't dangerous. What is dangerous is people having no opinions because that leads to apathy.

"Your life begins to end the moment you start being silent about the things that matter." Martin Luther King, Jr.

Apathy is a feeling. But it’s also an attitude. And sadly, that attitude is one of indifference, unconcern, detachment or dispassion and leads to stop taking action.

People who suffer from apathy, lose hope. Hope that personal happiness or fulfillment are not possible. If we lose hope then we stop making the world a better place to live.

When you see your friends on FB put a passionate political post or opinion that is different from yours, try not to be annoyed. Try to remember that this person is remarkable. That it is amazing that we can do this in America.

When we become a nation that people aren't having strong opinions then we are becoming a people who can't produce the emotions and energy to make our nation better.

Today you are possibly waking up to (hopefully it won't be months) a president elected. It is either the guy you voted for or the other guy.

Regardless of who won we are a blessed nation. A blessed people. We can believe differently from each other publicly and not be thrown in jail.

We can disagree on who should lead the nation. That difference of opinion is exactly what makes our nation great.

Our different views balance each other. Sometimes I think we forget this in the storm of opinions.

So next time you see a post or have a conversation and you think-"how can this person possible think this?" I want you to consider the thought that isn't it amazing that this person thinks differently from you and has the courage to share it.

Different opinions aren't the problem. The problem is our tolerance for people having different opinions.

That is the work for each of us. To build up our tolerance of different opinions - be more open to people believing different things. Look for what that person has in common with you -it could be just the fact that this person cares "just like me". Finding common ground can then lead to love and compassion and most importantly unity.

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