Our Blessed Lives - Happy Holidays

(Paul W. Abernathy) #1

Hello All, ( posted this in Members Only Area but felt the message goes beyond that area, forgive me if it offends anyone )

I was sitting in my office today pondering what Christmas or as others may simply call the holiday season and i was kinda reflecting on what it means to me and felt it was about that time for my yearly personal chat.

The other while sitting in church I found myself asking myself...what am I here for and what have I done for others, and more directly what can I do to make dreams come true for others.

And while I am thinking this It takes me to what I am doing for a young boy named Henry in my area.

You see...Henry is 9 years old and had nothing, hardly any clothes and no toys and well he has to endure hardship on a daily basis while I sleep in my warm bed and eat my good meals...but what about poor henry i ask myself.

You know Henry never asks for much, his parents are struggling to provide things for this child and while henry I am sure is like any other child he would love to have things he see's other kids having....but Henry does not ask for much, Henry does not cry about his situation....Henry just goes on with his daily life not expecting much and praying for more.

Now, I don't know Henry. You see Henry is a child in my area that is part of the Salvation Armys gift program where they put names on a local tree and you pick it off and give a gift to a child......so we happen to pick Henry from this tree............why Henry....Why Me.....why now.

Well little henry who is 9 years old wears a size 2 shoe, so we know little henry is quite little BUT little henry did not ask for anything really, in fact he only had one thing listed on his card...his DREAM was to own a bike....

Now I reflected on this, I reflected on my own life and my own childs life. My son has everything a child could want, multiple bikes, video games and probably every toy known to exist ( well probably not all ) because I love my child and I want him to be happy........BUT what I found is what is the real purpose of the holidays.....and this HIT me in church...

The Holidays are INDEED about receiving.

Now I know someone will say Paul what do you mean, it is about giving and before you think on that let me explain.......

The thought of giving HENRY his dream....if even for a DAY gave me such a rush of emotions I could not explain, The thought of seeing this childs eyes light up on Christmas day, the thought of his parents enjoying the warmth of his excitement if only for a DAY made me understand the TRUE meaning of Christmas and the Holidays......it is indeed receiving......receiving the warmth and joy of making others dreams come true, seeing them forget all their worries if only for a day.....

I can't express the feelings in words....I raced off to get more names because the feeling became intoxicating...just the thought of those children who do not ask for much, having their dreams come true if only for a day.

Yes, I bought Henry that BIKE....and it was a glorious Bike. Henry will not know me, he will not know how I care about a child I have never seen but the GIFT henry and his family gave me means more than any GIFT I could ever receive.....the GIFT of seeing others enjoy life if only for a day.

Bless you all.....Give to others.......Show the world you care and enjoy what you receive in warmth from those you give to.

Happy Holidays.......

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(Robert D. Grizzle, Jr.) #2

There is nothing better than knowing you can make a difference a childs life with things that we take for granted in everyday life. Seeing a kid that needs something a you can provide what they need, is awsome. What I really like is when you can see the reaction on their faces, that is makes working and putting the nose to the grind stone 365 days a year worth it.

I have been asking myself the same question, why am I doing what I do everyday. Thanks for that story I needed that.

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(Cheryl Nordby) #3

Hi Paul
Merry Christmas to you and your family.

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(Randy D. Stufflebeem) #4

Paul it is a great post and I am glad you brought it to this board which gives me the opportunity to make this challenge as I did in the members section after your post. It is a warm and touching post you made Paul. Thank you!

I took two names off the tree at Church as I normally do every year. I am inspired to troll through the town looking for more trees now. My Christmas wish!
I wish every INACHI member will go out and find that special tree and buy for that special person. Just imagine, the look on the face of the child that is less fortunate as us. Just imagine, 9000-10000 INACHI members doing this and giving happiness. Just imagine, how many of those kids will remember and do the same someday just because of you. Just imagine, if the INACHI members that belong to other organizations challenged the organizations to do the same. Just imagine the impact that would have. Just imagine, the feeling you get for caring enough to do these things. Just imagine!

Randy

All other organizations.....Please accept the challenge! Merry Christmas everyone.

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(Mike R. Byrd) #5

It takes TIME & EFFORT to realize all you have......I hope everyone feels their true blessings this holiday season. Take time to share, and help others do the same.
Thanks Paul.
great post.

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(Carolyn White) #6

Bless You Paul - You just brought a tear to my eye. It's amazing how good it makes you feel to help others in need. Especially the children. I have a Christmas story to share - but it is LONG.

My life changed about 12 years ago with a Christmas incident. Our Church was having a bazaar & someone came up with the idea for Santa to dress up & visit kids at home to get thier wish lists if the parents signed up. I volunteered to be Santa's helper & it turned out to be a day I will never forget.

We started out our day at about 8 am on Saturday & started visiting the kids who's parents had made appointments for us to visit. The day went pretty much as expected; Kids asking for bikes, skateboards, video games, etc. We almost got dog bit at a couple places & some people were not at home who had signed up for a visit. We had had an overall good time, but we were both tired by 7pm & I was ready to be done with it, by the time we knocked on our last door. The cutest little girl with HUGE blue eyes opened the door & I cannot describe the look of awe on her face when she saw Santa on her doorstep. We went in & started talking to the kids. There were 4 of them ranging in age from 6 months to 6 years old. We started with the youngest & worked our way to the oldest. The 4 year old asked for Santa to please make her Mommy happy - cause she cried all the time. The oldest asked for sausage & biscuits, because they all liked them & it had been so long since they'd had any.

I'd been looking around the house & there was minimal furniture in it & these people definitely looked to be in need of help from someone. I got the Mother to come outside with me to talk & it turns out she had moved to our area about 10 months earlier. She was only 22 years old & had been married since she was 14. She had married an older guy who worked at saw mills, cash jobs & she had never worked anywhere. She had no other family & her husband had been killed in an auto accident before the last baby was born - they were uninsured. This Girl was so painfully shy, it took me quite a while to get her to open up to me. She did not know how to drive & hitched to get to town when she had to go.

She was making a little money by cleaning a couple houses within walking distance of her house, but she just could not support herself & those kids with that money. She had sold almost everything she had, & really was at the end of her rope.

I left that house with an entirely different feeling than when I arrived. I went & bought a bunch of groceries to take back to that family. I cooked them a meal & added sausage & biscuits to the menu. After the kids went to bed, Karen & I talked into the wee hours of the morning. She had dropped out of school in the eighth grade to marry & had been in a very bad relationship - but she was just a kid & came from a bad family situation to begin with & didn't know any other way to live. It was heartbreaking, thinking of what this girl had been thru in her life with no one to turn to.

My family "adopted" that family that Christmas & I'm so proud to say Karen has done a complete turn around in her life. She got her GED, & she got a good job as a CNA. She wants to be an RN & is doing online classes now. Her youngest girl is now almost 13 & I feel like they all are part mine. I have not been able to have children of my own & I feel I was truly the one who was Blessed that day I knocked on Karen's door.

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(Cheryl Nordby) #7

Wow Carolyn, I just want to say how much I enjoyed reading your story. You have a heart of gold. Thanks for telling your story. It reminds us how many kind people there really are in the world.

Merry Christmas to you.

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(Kenneth Lott, 001236461) #8

Carolyn your story brought tears to my eyes. You will hear the words, "Well done my good and faithful servant" on that day. Thank you

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(Randy D. Stufflebeem) #9

Have you found that special tree with that special little persons name on it yet?

Merry Christmas!

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(Kenneth Lott, 001236461) #10

I haven't been able to get out and do it yet, feeling kinda rough. But I will. Thanks

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(Randy D. Stufflebeem) #11

I have no doubt you will Ken:) Get better soon!

We should keep reminding people of the tree and the person attached to it.

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(Carolyn White) #12

Bump...

I spent the day collecting & delivering donated Santa gifts for our local Carl Perkins Center for Child Abuse.

Find your tree guys & gals - Just imagine the smile you can help put on a kids face, share the magic!

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(Paul W. Abernathy) #13

Lets all dream of the wonderful smiling faces of children who will receive these gifts. It warms my heart to see people caring......Miracles do happen....

I would give anything to see the faces of these kids on Christmas Day.

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(Randy D. Stufflebeem) #14

Picked another (#4) name off a tree . The child is 12 years old and simply would like to have clothes. He shall have just that! New clothes for the first day back to school after Christmas! Something special about that!
Randy

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(Randy D. Stufflebeem) #15

Wow, I sure figured there would be a lot of inspectors, vendors, etc letting everyone know they are following the lead of Paul. I am sure many have helped a child, and I sure would like you to post about it. It really shows on this public forum what we are about and how we give. Feed them, put clothes on them, buy them a special toy for some surely will be left out! Sad don't you think?
Randy

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(Dana W. Bronsted) #16

I wont say this is our worst year money wise but It is close. Lots of reasons for it but mostly the cancer I had last year just emptied our bank account coupled with the building industry here has taken a dive.
Probably not the best time to start a new home inspection business. But that being said we were blessed enough to have a few presents under the tree and to have Jesus in our lives. I am looking forward to a new year and lots of marketing ahead and God willing profits. That being said my daughter and I went down to the store and purchased a few toys for a toy drive at school. Children are my love. I help with different youth groups in the area and would like to do more than I do now. That being said ..if you cant give monies..give time..the blessings are infinite.
Merry Christmas Everyone
Dana:D

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(Dana W. Bronsted) #17

I wont say this is our worst year money wise but It is close. Lots of reasons for it but mostly the cancer I had last year just emptied our bank account coupled with the building industry here has taken a dive.
Probably not the best time to start a new home inspection business. But that being said we were blessed enough to have a few presents under the tree and to have Jesus in our lives. I am looking forward to a new year and lots of marketing ahead and God willing profits. That being said my daughter and I went down to the store and purchased a few toys for a toy drive at school. Children are my love. I help with different youth groups in the area and would like to do more than I do now. That being said ..if you cant give monies..give time..the blessings are infinite.
Merry Christmas Everyone
Dana:D

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(Randy D. Stufflebeem) #18

Wow, I must say I am practically speechless. I wish you the best in 2008 with health, happiness, and business growth. You truly sum up what it is all about. How true as you say if you can't give money, give time. How very true!
Merry Christmas,
Randy
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