Posts Tagged ‘Appreciate’

I came across this very simple story recently and couldn’t help think how this could apply to all of us men out there…and we all can agree…sometimes life doesn’t go the way we want it to and our reaction maybe the key to how the ones we care about think about us…

I have no idea who wrote this and would love to give the credit to who did but we can all still enjoy it just the same…

And so the story goes…

483269_4537104829000_1468935906_nWhen I was a kid, my Mom liked to make “breakfast for dinner” every now and then and we were ok with that for us. I remember one night in particular though when she had made breakfast after a long, hard day at work. On that evening so long ago, my Mom placed a plate of eggs, sausage and extremely burned biscuits in front of my Dad and I remember waiting to see if anyone would notice.

Instead of reacting, my Dad simply reached for his biscuit, smile at my Mom and ask me how my day was at school. I don’t remember what I told him that night, but I do remember watching him smear butter and jelly on that ugly burned biscuit and he ate every bit of that thing…never making a face or uttering a word.

When I got up from the table that evening, I remember hearing my Mom apologize to my Father for burning the biscuits. And I’ll never forget what he said, “Honey, I love burned biscuits every now and then.”

Later that night, I went to hug my Dad good night and I asked him if he really liked his biscuits burned. I remember him wrapping me in his arms and saying, “Your Mom put in a hard day at work today and she’s very tired and besides…a little burned biscuit never hurt anyone”…

As I’ve grown older, I’ve often thought about that night because I have found that life is full of imperfect things and imperfect people. I’m not the best at many things; I forget birthdays and anniversaries just like everyone else but what I’ve learned over the years is that learning to accept one another’s faults and choosing to celebrate each other’s differences is one of the most important keys to creating a healthy, growing, and long-lasting relationship…or family.

That is my prayer for you today…that you will learn to look at life differently by taking the good, the bad, and the ugly parts of your life and laying them at the feet of God. Because frankly, in the end, Jesus is the only one who can give you a relationship where a burnt biscuit isn’t a deal-breaker…

“Don’t put the key to your happiness in someone else’s pocket – keep it in your own.”
So, please pass me a biscuit, and yeah, the burned one will be just fine.

Until next time guys…

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Have you ever had one of those moments when you thought one thing and the situation turned out entirely the opposite? I mean completely 180 degrees different from what you thought it would be like? What was your reaction…well besides dumbfounded? Sometimes those experiences can be extremely humbling…or at least they should be. But they do happen don’t they? and I think God has a tremendous sense of humor when it comes to some situations. It almost feels like he dangles a carrot right out there in front…right where we can see it…and for some find it to difficult to resist…

What I have for you this time is a little different from what I have ever posted before. This is a poem about just that very instance when you truly think one thing and something else happens…I did not write this and I’m not sure who did but nevertheless I present to you guys…The Cookie Thief

A woman was waiting at an airport one night with several hours before her flight.

She hunted for a book in the airport shop, bought a bag of cookies and looked for a place to drop.

She was engrossed in her book but happened to see that the man beside her, as bold as could be, grabbed a cookie or two from the bag which she tried to ignore to avoid a scene.

She munched cookies and watched the clock as the gutsy “cookie thief” dismissed her stock.

She was getting more irritated as the minutes ticked by, thinking, “if I wasn’t so nice, I’d blacken his eye!”

With each cookie she took he took one too, with only one left she wondered what he’d do.

With a smile on his face and a nervous laugh he took the last cookie and broke it in half.

He offered her half as he ate the other, she snatched it from him and thought, “Oh brother”, this guy has some nerve and he’s also rude. He didn’t even show any gratitude.

She had never known when she’d been so galled and sighed with relief when her flight was called.

She gathered her belongings and headed toward the gate, never looking back at the thieving ingrate.

She boarded the plane and sank in her seat, then sought out her book which was almost complete.

As she reached in her bag she gasped in surprise, there were her cookies in front of her eyes.

“If mine are here,” she moaned with despair, “then the others were his and he tried to share!”

Too late to apologize she realized with grief that she was the rude one, the ingrate, the thief…

I hope you enjoyed…

Until next time guys…

Over the last few years, the holidays have caused me to reflect back and look at my own life and count my many blessings. I have been more aware of “life’s moments” since the loss of my daughter a few years back. Recently, I spent time  with a man who I don’t see very often because of distance and as I call it, his “self estrangement” from his family because of his desire to be alone and pursue his own desires. Now wait just a minute…what man wouldn’t want to pursue his own passions? We are guys and passions i.e. our hobbies, are what we do, am I right? My friend’s “problem” is that he isn’t alone. He moved in with a woman a few years back and then proceeded to have a beautiful little baby with her. Now you will notice I said “problem” earlier when referring to his new family and is the reason I write this blog post. His complaints about his personal situation caused me to realize how wealthy he is RIGHT NOW, and he doesn’t see it.

Our conversation began about creativity because he is a talented artist, sculptor and more. He is one of those people who see art in everything and when he puts his mind to a project, I have been stunned to see his results. Since I’ve known him, I have come to see him as a creative person with a free spirit. Unfortunately as he puts it, he hasn’t “created” any new “pieces of art” in a long time due to his new-found responsibilities with his girl friend and new child. In my opinion, most new dads find a way around these home responsibilities if they truly want to do whatever their passion is, HE…has chosen to become bitter towards his family. THEY are the reason he cannot pursue what he wants to do and he sees his girl friend and child as obstacles in life’s journey. As I listened to him explain the “journey” he is navigating and why he never has the time to pursue his creativity, I couldn’t help commenting on how much of an inspiration his young daughter must be to him? Here is this little gleam of sunshine, innocence, and just pure beauty and yet he does not see her that way. From the outside looking in, I ask What is standing in his way and blocking him from seeing what seems so clear and obvious to me? What is robbing him of the joy of being a father?

In this life, what could be more important than your wife and child? Again, I recognize I have this opinion because my perspective is different from most men because when you lose a child it changes you…forever. I’m sure you have heard the expression, “walk a mile in another mans shoes?” In my conversation with him, I tried to convey what he is missing by dragging all this bitterness around. He has a beautiful little girl right there in front of him and it doesn’t phase him. Myself, a dad who lost his only daughter, can’t get through to him and emphasize his incredible blessing! He is a grown man who is unwilling to listen to my words about being unbelievably blessed with wealth by heavenly standards…I pray that he will discover that knowledge soon…before she is gone from his life.

Here is my question to you? Do you look at your own family and understand what I mean by true wealth? I think it is pretty clear I am not referring to your bank account. I am speaking to what I believe is really important in our lives. True wealth here on Earth is not measured in dollars and cents. Now I absolutely agree that We, (all of us guys), have our hobbies and personal pursuits that are just ours and yes, I do struggle with my own “time” issue. Trying to balance our personal life with work and family isn’t easy and there are a whole lots of books written on that subject to back me up. I am also NOT inferring I have it all together because I do not…But what I DO understand is that I am wealthy beyond measure… just like I know you are as well.

Guys, I encourage you to take a look at your family through different eyes, God’s eyes. Look at them for what they truly are…your legacy…and your true wealth…

Until next time…

A kind man benefits himself, but a cruel man brings trouble on himself.

Proverbs 11:17

I recently had an amazing experience with a young man who used to work for me at another company a couple of years ago. I can remember, everyday, I would see this guy working as hard as he could to do his job to the best of his ability. I don’t think I ever saw him without sweat just pouring off of him, doing what needed to be done. To make matters even more amazing, he would do his job with a huge smile on his face. One day I had the opportunity to speak with him about more than just a job going through our plant. I told him I appreciated his hard work and all his efforts and I remember saying I think you are a smart guy and you will move on and become more than just this entry level position to which I received a big smile again. I moved on to my next task and never thought about this again…

Fast forward 2 years. New company and new people and as I made my way through the plant and I see this same fellow working away only now he was running a much larger and more expensive piece of equipment. We made eye contact and I waved and he called me over and wanted to speak with me. He said, “do you remember me”? And I said, “of course I do Jose, how are you”, He said, “I remembered what you said and I kept working hard and now look what I have become”, and he held his arms out wide. Then it was my turn to smile…

Guys, I assure you I am just a regular guy like you and not an expert on human behavior and I’m not relating this story to you to bring attention to myself. I tell you this because of the realization I had that day about simply saying what was on my mind; something that was kind and true; and never realizing the impact my words had on him. As the man in charge or the leader of a household, it is easy to criticize others thinking they will be motivated as a result. Frankly, that is not the case. Negative comments cause animosity and frustration with whomever you speak with, your employees, your wife or your children. When you take the time to say something positive, you will reap a huge reward. Like me, you may find what you said helped motivate somebody to think they could be more…