I have a dear friend who is an outstanding storyteller. He always offers this disclaimer when he begins a good story that he has made his own: “The pearls are not mine, but the string that holds them together is!”

Although the following “pearl” is not mine, the string that dangles this gem before you (aka this blog!) definitely belongs to me!

Fr. Paul Keller was the visiting priest a few months ago at my community of faith, St. Thomas More Catholic Chapel at Yale, and the very simple homily and formula for life he shared affected me in a deeply profound and unexpected way.

I’ve shared it with friends and acquaintances dozens of times, and remind myself of it at least that many times per day. Yes, that’s right, per day.

Fr. Paul observed that we live our lives in one of two ways…in love, or in fear.

Every decision we make, every response we have, is made based on love, or based on fear.

Think about it.

In order to be a loving person, to live in love, your decisions and responses must be made with truth and kindness. Together.

Truth without kindness can be cruel. Kindness without truth can be patronizing and irrelevant.

This is the part I nearly fainted at right in the middle of his homily…seriously, I got lightheaded…

“When truth and kindness meet, justice and peace kiss.”

Decisions and responses based on love, with the basis of love being truth and kindness, and the end result being a life that is peaceful and just, well, that’s the life for me.

Every single decision you make, every single response you have, can be traced to love or fear.

Which do YOU choose?