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No one cares about Justin Bieber's arrest

No one cares about Justin Bieber's arrest. Or Jennifer Lawrence's wardrobe. Or Miley Cyrus's hair.

At least, not in a deeply personal, life-altering way. 

Ok, maybe some people do care that much. 

But for most of us, while tabloids exploit the personal lives of these celebrities for sheer entertainment value, we move on with our lives as usual, because - quite frankly - the headlines just don't matter. 


What difference does it make in my life? None. 

Will pop culture impact my life for the better? Not likely. 

Am I a better person for having kept up with celebrity gossip? Nope. 

Let's be honest.

The people who make the greatest impact on your life aren't famous. They're not drawing attention from the media. They're not delivering a political speech, playing in the Super Bowl, or posing for cameras on the red carpet.

The people who make the greatest impact on your life are those who are closest to you. 

The teacher who invests in you. 

The boss who welcomes your ideas.

The coach who believes in you. 

The friend who listens to you. 

The spouse who loves you. 

The children who make you laugh. 

It's the people we spend our everyday lives with who truly make a difference. They share their hearts. They encourage us. They lift us up when we fall down. And they commit themselves to deeply loving the people around them. 

My piano teacher was one such individual. I studied with him from middle school through college. He never gave up on me. He continuously encouraged me. He saw the best in me when I was ready to throw in the towel. And he pushed me to achieve more than I ever dreamed. 

With his persistence - and the loving support of my parents - I chose to major in music. I wrote and recorded 4 albums before graduating summa cum laude from a highly competitive music program. He believed in me. And he was the kind of guy that wouldn't let me falter - even if it meant he had to hold my hand every step of the way.

He passed away unexpectedly eight years ago, well before his time. The very last time we talked, he spoke with the usual direct enthusiasm that I had come to know and love. These were his last words to me: "Don't you EVER quit singing and playing. You're too talented! Use those gifts, girl!"

Yes, sir. 

THAT is the kind of power and impact we should all strive to have in the lives around us. 

Contagious joy.

Loving honesty.

Undiminished enthusiasm. 

Faithful commitment. 

Be the encourager. Be the believer. Be the best friend.

Because someday when your friends and family look back and recall the relationships that have meant the most to them throughout life, they probably won't think of Justin Bieber. They'll think of you. 

Dedicated to Scottt E. Sward
Aug. 24, 1962 - Jan. 25, 2006



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