Archive for February, 2018

“Love is how you stay alive, even after you have gone.”

Mitch Albom

Powerful Advice From A Dying Man

I have come to the pinnacle of success in business. In the eyes of others, my life has been the symbol of success. However, apart from work, I have little joy. Finally, my excessive wealth is simply a fact to which I am accustomed.

At this time, lying on the hospital bed and remembering all my life, I realize all the accolades and riches of which I was once so proud, have become insignificant with my imminent death. In the dark, when I look at the green lights of the equipment for artificial respiration and feel the buzz of their mechanical sounds, I can feel the breath of my approaching death looming over me.

I am alone.

Only now do I understand that once you have accumulated enough money for the rest of your life, you need to pursue objectives that are not related to wealth; something more important – like stories of love and laughter shared, art, music, dreams from my childhood.

Only now do I realize the importance of creating precious memories with my children when they were young, or of private intimate talks with my wife, or of walks in the wilderness. . . for I have few.

No, stop pursuing more and more money. . . and things . . . and fame and glory. . . it can only make a person into a twisted being, just like me.

Learn to understand when it is enough. Learn to realize when pursuing more takes you away from life’s true meaning.

Our pure selves are made to love, we can feel the love in the heart of each of us, and not illusions built by fame or money, like I made in my life.

I cannot take them with me. I can only take with me the memories that were strengthened by love. This is the true wealth that will follow you; will accompany you until your dying days.

Love can travel thousands of miles and so life has no limits. Move to where you want to go. Strive to reach the goals you want to achieve. But don’t forget to take love with you. Everything that is anything is in your heart and your heart is in your hands.

What is the world’s most expensive bed? The hospital bed. If you have money, you can hire someone to drive your car, but you cannot hire someone to take the illness that is killing you.

Material things lost can be found. But one thing you can never find when you lose it… is life itself. Whatever stage of life you are in right now, at the end, you will have to face the day when the curtain falls. We all get there.

Please treasure your family, love for your spouse, love for your friends. Treat everyone well, stay friendly with your neighbors and create a loving community around you, for that is the kind of wealth and abundance and peace of mind that even death can’t take away.

Author Unknown

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Our children have laid down their lives as collateral for your right to own this:


How’s that working for you?

The following was posted on Facebook and I share it with you here. It’s an editorial from the Sydney Morning Herald:

“It is incomprehensible to us, as Australians, that a country so proud and great can allow itself to be savaged again and again by its own citizens. We cannot understand how the long years of senseless murder, the Sandy Hooks and Orlandos and Columbines have not proved to Americans that the gun is not a precious symbol of freedom, but a deadly cancer on their society.

We point over and over to our own success with gun control in the wake of the Port Arthur massacre, that Australia has not seen a mass shooting since and we are still a free and open society.

We have not bought our security at the price of liberty; we have, instead, consented to a social contract that states lives are precious and not to be casually ended by lone madmen. But it is a message that means nothing to those whose ideology is impervious to evidence.

  • Demand universal background checks
  • Demand a ban on assault weapons
  • Demand a ban on all modifications to convert weapons to semi or fully automatic
  • Demand accountability by the Senators and Representatives on the NRA payroll.”

And from our neighbors up north in Canada:

“We have mental illness, but we do not have a mass shooting problem. We have the absence of God in our schools, but we do not have a mass shooting problem. We have divorce and broken families, but we do not have a mass shooting problem.

We have atheism, but we do not have a mass shooting problem. We have alcohol and drug addictions, but we do not have a mass shooting problem. We have strict gun control laws and we do not have a mass shooting problem.”

I think it is important to note that: 

  • The right to life was enshrined in our country’s founding long before the 2nd Amendment
  • Since 1995, there have been 96 mass shootings, including 7 of  the deadliest 11
  • Gun death rate in this country is 10x any other advanced industrial country in the world
  • An AR-15 can be purchased by someone under 21. A hand gun cannot
  • An AR-15 was the weapon of choice in nearly every mass shooting
  • Three of the biggest mass shootings in the US have taken place in the last 5 months
  • A Missouri youth baseball team is moving ahead with a raffle of an AR-15. It’s a fundraiser for a third grade team in Neosho, MO. Players selling tickets range from age 7-9. (see below for what YOU can do about this!)
  • The Republican Congress has done absolutely NOTHING!!!

What can you do?

  • Contribute to Everytown for Gun Safety: Click HERE
  • Giffords PAC – The Courage to Fight Gun Violence: Click HERE
  • Support the students at Parkland:
    • Join a “March for Our Lives” on March 24th – somewhere in your area. If there isn’t one, create one.
    • Support the School Walk-out on April 20thand walk with them to a local gov’t agency and voice your support for gun control
  • Write to your Congressmen/Senators and Representatives – DEMAND common sense gun reforms
  • Speak Up! Be ready to VOTE OUT every politician who has accepted money from the NRA
  • The entire Neosho School District contact email has now been shut down so – Contact the  Missouri State Commissioner of the Board of Education and express your views about the AR-15 youth baseball raffle. Call attention to Lee Woodward, Principal of South Elementary who reinforced this raffle (even after the recent shooting!!) and Levi Patterson, the baseball coach who donated the gun!!

This is what you can do NOW – click on the links and send your email to the Board of Education now before closing this window.

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Don't Be a Jerk Pic

Life is Short. People are Hurting. Don’t be a Jerk.

By John Pavlovitz
I walked around today and I looked at people; those passing me in the grocery store, driving beside me on the highway, filling my newsfeed, walking by the house. I tried to really see them.
I tried to look beneath the surface veneer they wore; to imagine the invisible burdens they might be carrying beneath it: sick children, relational collapse, financial tension, crippling depression, profound grief, crisis of faith, loss of purpose-or maybe just the custom designed multitude of the nagging insecurities and fears they’ve been carrying around since grade school and have never been able to shake.
As I looked at all these people, I wondered what kind of specific and personal hell they might be enduring, and it reminded me-so I’m reminding you:
Life is stunningly short and it is eggshell fragile.
Most people are having a really tough time.
They are almost always in more pain than you think they are. Everyone is doing the very best they can to get through this day, and many are going through all manner of horrors in the process.
No one is immune from the invasive collateral damage of living.
And you don’t have to save these people or fix them or give them any special treatment.
They are rarely asking for such things.
The only thing these wounded and weary human beings need from you as you share this space with them – is for you to not be a jerk.
It’s really that simple.
They need you to not contribute to their grieving, not to compound their sadness, not to amplify their fear, not to add to their adversity.
They need anything less than contempt from you. They need you to embrace the vow of doctors and caregivers, of trying to do no harm to them.
This isn’t difficult, either.
Actually, when it comes right down to it, not being a jerk is about as elementary as it gets:
Don’t impose your religious beliefs on other people.
Don’t demand that they adapt to your preferences of identity or orientation.
Don’t try to take away things that keep them physically healthy or give them peace of mind or allow them access to education or opportunity.
Don’t put obstacles in a parent’s way of caring for their children or working to support them or guiding them safely into adulthood.
Don’t tell people who they can marry or how they should worship or where they can call home.
Don’t do things that make them more vulnerable to sickness and sadness and stress.
Don’t try to keep people from having things that you take for granted.
Strangely enough, it’s actually so much more work to be a jerk to people – and yet, so many seem hopelessly bent on it. Right now in America, we are seeing what happens when people discard the Golden Rule; when they abandon simple decency and choose enmity; when they feel compelled to show cruelty to strangers; when another’s sorrow is of no concern.
On social media, in our school hallways, in our neighborhoods, even in the highest levels of Government, we are seeing an epidemic of malevolence; men and women seemingly driven to be hurtful and to do damage – human beings compelled to be jerks.
Friends, I wish I could find a more eloquent, more poetic, less abrasive way to say this, but I can’t. At the end of the day, so many of the grieving, struggling, fearful human beings filling up the landscape you find yourself in today, are hanging by the very thinnest of threads.
They are heroically pushing back despair, enduring real and imagined terrors, warring with their external circumstances and with their internal demons.
They are doing the very best they can, sometimes with little help or hope – and they just need those of us who live alongside them to make that best-doing a little easier.
These words are for me.
They’re for you.
They’re for ordinary people.
They’re for our elected leaders.
They’re for our President.
Life is short.
It is extremely fragile.
People are grieving.
They are struggling.
They are hurting.For God’s sake and for theirs – please just don’t be a jerk.
Thank you to John Pavlovitz for this article.

More from John can be found at: Stuff That Needs To Be Said. 

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