I watched the opening ceremony to the Special Olympics and my eyes swelled with tears. As the Olympians and the police volunteers, who have collected funds around the world for the Special Olympics, wound their way down a ski slope at night each holding a lighted torch to bring in the flame of hope to the center stage, I was moved by the harmonious music, softness of the flow and quiet awe of the crowd. I was struck by the beauty of the mix of nations participating as friends, co-contestants and examples of what could be in creating unity and peace among people.

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The celebration showed people of all nations singing, dancing and laughing joyfully together. You could not tell the difference in cultures, just one huge group of people, covered with rain gear, smiling and cheering.

Can we all give pause and realize the beauty of these moments? Can we not find a way to create this harmony among people, communities and nations? This is such a stark difference from the incessant flow of ugly remarks, bigotry, and nastiness that have become the norm.

To quote Jason Mrasz’s song that he sang as part of the end of the ceremonies:

I Won’t Give Up
When I look into your eyes
It’s like watching the night sky
Or a beautiful sunrise
There’s so much they hold
And just like them old stars
I see that you’ve come so far
To be right where you are
How old is your soul?

Well I won’t give up on us, even if the skies get rough
I’m giving you all my love, I’m still looking up

And when you’re needing your space, to do some navigating
I’ll be here patiently waiting, to see what you find

‘Cause even the stars they burn
Some even fall to the earth
We’ve got a lot to learn
God knows we’re worth it
No, I won’t give up

I don’t wanna be someone who walks away so easily
I’m here to stay and make the difference that I can make
Our differences they do a lot to teach us how to use
The tools and gifts we got yeah, we got a lot at stake
And in the end, you’re still my friend at least we did intend
For us to work we didn’t break, we didn’t burn
We had to learn how to bend without the world caving in
I had to learn what I’ve got, and what I’m not and who I am

I won’t give up on us, even if the skies get rough
I’m giving you all my love
I’m still looking up, still looking up.

I won’t give up on us (no I’m not giving up)
God knows I’m tough enough (I am tough, I am loved)
We’ve got a lot to learn (we’re alive, we are loved)
God knows we’re worth it (and we’re worth it)

I won’t give up on us, even if the skies get rough
I’m giving you all my love, I’m still looking up”

Songwriters: Michael Lee Natter / Jason Mraz
I Won’t Give Up lyrics © Goo Eyed Music

May we all keep our hope and choose to include these amazing universal ideas into our lives.
These wonderful contestants show us that
ANYTHING IS POSSIBLE!