There’s a Native American legend about two wolves. As the story goes, we have two wolves inside our hearts: a wolf of love and a wolf of hate. The wolf of hate is filled with anger, sorrow, ego, fear, pride, envy, arrogance, greed, and superiority. The heart of the wolf of love overflows with hope, humility, generosity, truth, serenity, harmony, kindness, joy, and peace.
These two wolves create an internal struggle, but the wolf you feed determines how you walk through life. Even if you’re hurt or wronged, feeding the wolf of hate only wears you down. It changes you.
When my granddaughter was ten, I had a conversation with her about the Holocaust. I tried to explain that for Adolph Hitler to convince tens of thousands of people to kill fellow human beings, he had to be able to feed the “wolf of hate.”
Years ago, I met an amazing Jewish woman who survived the Holocaust. She showed me the tattoo that branded her as “worth less.” She told me the story of a Catholic priest, shot in the middle of a street while standing up for those being persecuted. She told me, without words, how he had tried to feed the “wolf of love.”
How many times have we been “haters”—people who, cloaked in our self-righteousness, have passed judgment or uttered words that hurt or destroyed fellow humans?
We have the opportunity to feed the “wolf of love” each day. Some days those choices are straightforward. Other days, it’s a bit tougher, isn’t it? A veil of sadness and shock continues to cloak our country as we attempt to understand the latest expressions of “the wolf of hate” being fed. The last eleven words of our Pledge of Allegiance are, “one Nation, under God, indivisible with liberty and justice for all”—”with liberty and justice for all.” We dream of peace for our planet, but we haven’t been able to create peace in our country, so we pray.
It’s sometimes hard to rise up; to take a stand.
In our humanness, we sometimes, maybe often, give up as soon as it’s tough.
Be with us if we become discouraged, afraid, or think we can’t take one more step.
Remind us that we can be harbingers of good—agents of change.
Strengthen us as we struggle through hardships so that those who see us can say, “See how they love one another.”
Who do You want us to be?
Fear • Judgement • Hate
Help us, God, replace those with
Respect • Peace • Love
Even if we feel too small to make a difference—to count in a world with billions of people—we know, on a core level, that we are not powerless. Please give us the courage to provide voices for the voiceless. Help us to choose a journey that honors You. Help us do Your will. Help us feed the wolf of love.