As the second season of the ABC primetime television series Nashville concluded recently, I wanted to take a step back and share some of the thoughts, and emotions, and life principles that this series is dealing with. You're welcome to take into account that my youngest son is one of the main characters on the show (and of course I believe that he is doing a fantastic job as an actor and musician on the show), but even if he wasn't on the show and I were to watch the show intently even without that connection, I should likely come away with these same thoughts.

First of all, since "the fall,” every person born into this broken world (save One) is also broken, and flawed, and hurting, as well as being quite capable of hurting others. Early in our journey we respond to the hurt that we've been dealt generally, by trying to do things we think will make us feel better, or at least exact some retribution for our hurt. That pretty much universally doesn't work, but it's rare that we figure out that truth until a lot of time has gone by-- all the while likely then being the cause of so much more hurt in those around us. So what to do when we finally do realize a bigger picture: that the spiritual truths of unconditional love, forgiveness, letting go of hurt, and an appreciation for our life journey even when difficult, are all so much better than revenge, or trying to pretend we aren't broken and in need of a deep and profound healing--a healing that only something bigger than ourselves can provide.

The Nashville characters have been given storylines that have done a remarkably insightful job of telling these stories: of young people growing up hurting and damaged, their not-yet-mature selves trying to figure it all out (usually without solid mentorship), making poor choices that hurt themselves and others along the way, and then realizing that they have an opportunity to start again (wherever they find themselves on their journey). They have an opportunity every day, right now, to change how they look at life, how they see themselves, and how they see and treat others.

Learning to truly receive love from outside of ourselves, learning to love ourselves and others, learning to truly forgive, to move on even after the world has hurt us or we have hurt ourselves, and choose to begin again with a new and more healed perspective and purpose--these are some of the beautiful things that we witnessed in the stories presented in the final episodes of this second season of Nashville.

Is the story everything it might be? Perhaps not. Is it at times more sensational than it needs to be? Perhaps, but if we look at today's rehab centers and counseling centers, and were we allowed inside the truth of our friends and neighbors (and even our family’s) hearts and lives,  I suspect it wouldn't be all that different from the stories we get on Nashville.

So I will choose to be encouraged watching these fictional characters struggle to grow and heal, because in reality, each of us does have the opportunity to let go of what should be let go of--to receive the unconditional love from "above,” and truly live lives of meaning and purpose that can never be defined and limited by "mere circumstance!”

God bless always,

Ricky Lee Jackson

What Fox News Says About Ricky Lee Jackson:

"He’s the new Joe the Plumber; now there's Rick the Doctor...
Some have joined Tea Parties, stormed town halls, others like family practice physician and country recording artist Ricky Lee Jackson have taken to the microphone... 
he wants his country back." 
~ Fox and Friends / Fox News

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