Monday, March 27, 2017

Love those health care workers

It was not my plan at all to spend the weekend in hospital, but that's what happened. I won't go into details, because this blog is NOT about me, but I will say I am okay and there is no need to worry. I also want to say that health care workers are incredible!

In the past few days I got to see nurses, aides, technicians, phlebotomists, physicians, and any number of other hospital employees, not only dealing with me, but I could overhear their interactions with other patients.  So much caring!  If the whole world was like the people I have just encountered this weekend, we would never have anything to worry about.

Being a nurse or any health care worker, makes a difference to other people.  Think about the work they do the next time you visit your doctor.  Be sure to say thanks!


Friday, March 24, 2017

The day Mom left

Tomorrow is one of those anniversaries that is very bittersweet. It will be four years since Mom (Teddy Fritts) left us. I try not to write about me in this blog. The purpose here as you know, is to write about heroes who change the world - people who make a difference. For me, there is nobody who made more of a difference than my mom.

Last year March 25th was Good Friday. It's a very solemn church day, but we looked ahead a couple of days when my friend and I went to visit her final resting place. I stood there thinking not only of how much I missed her, but of how much she gave me. That's what happens with our heroes. They make us better. Mom most certainly made me the person I am today. She also influenced countless others.


This weekend, join my sister and I in thinking about our mom. Think too of your own parents and of people who made a difference to you. Let them know what they mean to you, and always keep them in your heart.

Monday, March 13, 2017

Community comes out to say goodbye

Last Friday I was present as the local community paid tribute to a law enforcement officer who had died after a long fight against cancer. I'll be part of the local Relay For Life supporting your American Cancer Society later this spring because I have personally been touched so many times by cancer. What I want to talk about though is this hero and the people who loved him. I'm living in a relatively small town these days, and so it is much more common to know many people in different parts of town. I don't think I have ever seen such a huge turnout though, except for celebrities.


The day began at a local church, where every seat was filled and the mourners even stretched out the front doors and spilled onto the sidewalks outside. Next there was a special luncheon, and the number in attendance was even larger. Immediately after the lunch, there was a civic memorial and the number of folks had doubled. Men and women in uniform were present, with family and friends and folks who barely knew him. Tribute after tribute said the same thing - this was a kind and caring man who loved his family, his God, his community, and his friends.

What really impressed me was how many people came out and the diversity in the crowd.  A deputy sheriff died - not some horrible crime related death while performing his duties, but a slow and painful death from disease.  People weren't talking about how his life ended though - they spoke of how it was lived, and boy was it lived!

Wednesday, March 8, 2017

For him it makes a difference

Another one of those "internet parables" came my way the other day, and although you may have heard it, this one again is worth sharing. Like others I have shared here in the past, I have no idea who the author is.

It seems an old man was going for a walk one day when he noticed a little boy feeding a thin, shaggy looking dog with bits of bread. He went up to the boy and asked him why he was sharing his bread with the dog.

The little boy answered, "Because he has nothing. No home, no family, and if I don’t feed him he will die."

"But there are homeless dogs everywhere," the old man replied. "Your efforts don’t really make a difference."

The little boy looked at the dog and stroked him. "For him, for this little dog, it makes all the difference in the world."

I wish I knew who wrote this because they get it so amazingly right. Did you ever hold back from donating money or food or anything else because you could only spare a small amount and thought it wouldn't make a difference? If we all fed those homeless dogs - if we all fed those homeless people, it would make such a difference. I'm thinking we just might wipe out homelessness!

Monday, March 6, 2017

Change the World

Listening to Eric Clapton sing Change the World, I find myself thinking of all the many things I would love to do. Clapton's song is really a love song, but it's from the motion picture Phenomenon and the film was about someone who indeed changed the world.

A couple of wonderful scenes from the movie stick in my mind. In on of them, the lead character George Malley asks his love interest Lace Pennamin, "Hey, would you, uh, love me for the rest of my life?" Her response: "No, I'm gonna love you for the rest of mine." In another scene, George is trying to comfort the two small children of Lace, who have just learned that he is dying. George uses an apple as a metaphor, saying that no matter what, an apple will rot and die if thrown on the ground, but if you were to take a bite out of it, the apple would become a part of you, and you would carry it with you forever. I really love that way of looking at it. He is essentially saying that he will therefore live forever.

From a Clapton song to a major film, there are different ways of looking at leaving a piece of yourself behind - of changing the world.  If we all do something that becomes a part of others, we will in a sense, live forever.  Of course we don't try to do good or change the world, just so we will have immortality.  We do it to benefit our families and our friends and other loved ones.  We all can change the world!

Friday, March 3, 2017

Live for something greater

Just what does it mean to live for something greater?  Think about it for a moment.  Are we talking about great accomplishments?  Are we talking about a greater power?  Are we talking about a set of values?  What do you think?
 
I write a lot about hometown heroes and to me, those are the folks who live for something greater.  It might not have been something they thought about or planned, but by their actions or by their words, they made a difference and it was something that endures.
 
Do you want you live to be infancy, school, work, retirement, and then death with no great milestones along the way?  Well most of us don't.  It's human nature to do new things and along the way to become more and more popular and to have more and more friends.  Although we know we cannot live forever, many of us want something we do or say to last beyond our time on this earth.  That's what motivates them to do great things.
 
The motivations can be many.  There need not be just one answer to my above questions.  How about if we all strive to live for something greater!

Thursday, March 2, 2017

sunrise - sunset

Isn't this a glorious vision?  Wait a moment though - in this picture, are we looking at a sunrise or a sunset?  Can you tell the difference?  Is one more beautiful than the other? 
 
There are those who prefer the rising of the sun in the morning.  It signals a fresh start; a brand new day.  Most of us when we see it are just waking up and are rested and refreshed after a night's sleep.
 
Some people prefer to look at the sun as it sets.  The day is finished and now, as the sun goes down, a time of rest is approaching.  We have done what we set out to do and there will be another opportunity to do more wonderful things tomorrow.
 
However we look at the sun though, one thing is certain.  It is beautiful.  Take a moment and just reflect on this picture.  There is beauty all around us.  Take a moment and enjoy some of that too.  In fact, start looking at all the beauty that surrounds you, and I guarantee in will change your day!

Wednesday, March 1, 2017

One man's trash

Something that one person considers to be worthless just might be considered valuable by someone else.  I think the old saying is that one man's trash is another man's treasure.  You might also look at it as always seeing something positive, even in something as seemingly worthless as garbage.
 
I know people who always see the positive.  I try to be like that myself.  I would much rather enjoy the everyday experiences and rejoice in the hidden beauty that is so often missed than to spend unnecessary time and money going for the lavish expensive things that so many covet but which all too often are really over rated.
 
There is so much good - everywhere.  All we have to do is open our eyes and our minds.  Now, I'm not saying we should wallow in dirt and filth, but we can appreciate the less extravagant.  We can also do something about the filth and make it so that everyone might enjoy it!