Strength and Courage by David L. Griffith

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It takes strength to be certain,
It takes courage to have doubts.

It takes strength to fit in,
It takes courage to stand out.

It takes strength to share a friend’s pain,
It takes courage to feel your own pain.

It takes strength to hide your own pain,
It takes courage to show it and deal with it.

It takes strength to stand guard,
It takes courage to let down your guard.

It takes strength to conquer,
It takes courage to surrender.

It takes strength to endure abuse,
It takes courage to stop it.

It takes strength to stand alone,
It takes courage to lean on a friend.

It takes strength to love,
It takes courage to beloved.

It takes strength to survive,
It takes courage to live.

by David L. Griffith

Student Counting Apples

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A teacher teaching Maths to seven-year-old Laiq asked him, “If I give you one apple and one apple and one apple, how many apples will you have?”

Within a few seconds Laiq replied confidently, “Four!”

The dismayed teacher was expecting an effortless correct answer, three. She was disappointed. “Maybe the child did not listen properly.” – she thought.

She repeated, “Laiq, listen carefully. If I give you one apple and one apple and one apple, how many apples will you have?”

Laiq had seen the disappointment on his teacher’s face. He calculated again on his fingers. But within him he was also searching for the answer that will make the teacher happy. His search for the answer was not for the correct one, but the one that will make his teacher happy.

This time hesitatingly he replied, “Four.”

The disappointment stayed on the teacher’s face. She remembered that Laiq liked strawberries.

She thought maybe he doesn’t like apples and that is making him loose focus.

This time with an exaggerated excitement and twinkling in her eyes she asked, “If I give you one strawberry and one strawberry and one strawberry, then how many you will have?”

Seeing the teacher happy, young Laiq calculated on his fingers again. There was no pressure on him, but a little on the teacher. She wanted her new approach to succeed.

With a hesitating smile young Laiq replied, “Three?”

The teacher now had a victorious smile. Her approach had succeeded. She wanted to congratulate herself.

But one last thing remained. Once again she asked him, “Now if I give you one apple and one apple and one more apple how many will you have?”

Promptly Laiq answered, “Four!”

The teacher was aghast. “How Laiq, how?” she demanded in a little stern and irritated voice.

In a voice that was low and hesitating young Laiq replied, “Because I already have one apple in my bag.”

Author Unknown

The Dark Candle

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A man had a little daughter, an only and much beloved child. He lived only for her, she was his life. So when she became ill and her illness resisted the efforts of the best obtainable physicians, he became like a man possessed, moving heaven and earth to bring about her restoration to health.

His best efforts proved fruitless, however, and the child died. The father was totally irreconcilable. He became a bitter recluse, shutting himself away from his many friends, refusing every activity that might restore his poise and bring him back to his normal self.

Then one night he had a dream. He was in heaven and witnessing a grand pageant of all the little child angels. They were marching in an apparently endless line past the Great White Throne. Every white-robed, angelic tot carried a candle. He noticed, however, that one child’s candle was not lit. Then he saw that the child with the dark candle was his own little girl. Rushing towards her, while the pageant faltered, he seized her in his arms, caressed her tenderly, and asked, “How is that your candle is the only one not lit?” “Father, they often relight it, but your tears always put it out again,” she said.

Just then he awoke from from his dream. The lesson was crystal clear, and it’s effects were immediate. From that hour on he was no longer a recluse, but mingled freely and cheerfully with his former friends and associates. No longer would his little darling’s candle be extinguished by his useless tears.

Author Unknown

The Grass Cutting Days

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The pastor called me to come forward. I walked to the pulpit confident and proud. I looked out at my family. Some wore somber expressions. Others had faces still damp with tears. Then I gazed down at the shiny black coffin crowned with yellow flowers.

My father, Charlie Lyons, was gone. It was my turn at his funeral earlier this year to pay tribute to the man who taught me so much growing up on the Northside. How do you sum up a lifetime in 10 minutes?

I flashed to Dad holding the handlebar and jogging alongside my bike until I felt ready to ride on my own. I saw him pulling up to my broken-down car at night, doing a quick fix and trailing me home. I thought of the hug we shared at my wedding.

Then, I started talking about a special moment I draw from now. Dad was always full of advice, but one of the biggest lessons he taught me one summer was about having a strong work ethic. When my brother and I were growing up, we mowed yards during the summer to earn pocket change. Dad was our salesman. He pitched our service to neighbors and offered a price they could not refuse. My brother and I got $10 per yard. Some yards were a half-acre. I later found out our friends were charging $20 or more for the same amount of work.

Every time we headed out to mow lawns, Dad was there to watch. I used to wonder why he came with us. He stood supervising our work in the sticky Florida heat when he could have been inside relaxing with air conditioning and an icy drink.

One day we were cutting our next-door neighbor’s yard. She always waited until the grass was knee-high to call us over. To make matters worse, we had an old lawn mower that kept cutting off as we plowed through her backyard jungle. This particular afternoon, I was finishing up and was tired and sweaty. I pictured the tall glass of Kool-Aid I would gulp in a minute to cool down.

I was just about to cut off the lawn mower when I saw Dad pointing to one lone blade. I thought about the chump change I was getting paid for cutting grass so high it almost broke the mower. I ignored him and kept walking. Dad called me out and yelled, “You missed a piece.”

I frowned, hoping he would let me slide and go home. He kept pointing. So beat and deflated, I went back to cut that piece of grass. I mumbled to myself: “That one piece isn’t hurting anyone. Why won’t he just let it go?”

But when I reached adulthood, I understood his message: When you’re running a business, the work you do says a great deal about you. If you want to be seen as an entrepreneur with integrity, you must deliver a quality product. That single blade of grass meant the job was not done.

Other neighbors took notice of the good work we did and we soon garnered more business. We started out with one client, but by the end of the summer we had five, which was all we cared to handle because we wanted time to enjoy our summer break from school.

The lesson my dad taught me stayed with me: Be professional. If you say you are going to perform a job at a certain time, keep your word. Give your customers the kind of service you would like to receive. It shows how sincere you are and how much pride you take in your work.

Before I knew it, my tribute was over. I saw my wife jump to her feet in an ovation. The pastor embraced me. People rushed to shake my hand. Though Dad’s body lay inside the coffin, I felt his spirit there. I pictured him standing in the sanctuary, wearing the white T-shirt and blue shorts he did on grass-cutting days. Always there for me and always proud.

By Patrick A. Lyons

Put Mind at Ease

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One day, Buddha was walking from one town to another with a few of his followers.

While they were traveling, they happened to pass by a lake. They stopped to rest there and Buddha asked one of his disciples to get him some water from the lake.

A disciple walked up to the lake. When he reached it, he noticed some people were washing clothes in the water and, right at that moment, a bullock cart started crossing through the lake.

As a result, the water became very muddy. The disciple thought, ““How can I give this muddy water to Buddha to drink!””

So he came back and told Buddha, “”The water in the lake is very muddy. I don’’t think it is suitable to drink.””

After a while, Buddha again asked the same disciple to go back to the lake and get him some water.

The disciple obediently went back to the lake. This time he found that the mud had settled down and the water was clean so he collected some in a pot and brought it to Buddha.

Buddha looked at the water then looked up at the disciple and said, ““See what you did to make the water clean. You let it be and the mud settled down on its own. It is also the same with your mind. When it is disturbed, just let it be. Give it a little time and it will settle down on its own.”

Author Unknown

A bowl of noodles from a stranger

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That night, Sue quarreled with her mother, then stormed out of the house. While enroute, she remembered that she did not have any money in her pocket, she did not even have enough coins to make a phone call home.

At the same time, she went through a noodle shop, picking up sweet fragrance, she suddenly felt very hungry. She wished for a bowl of noodles, but she had no money!

The seller saw her standing wheat faltered before the counter and asked:

– Hey little girl, you want to eat a bowl?

– But … but I do not carry money … she shyly replied.

– Okay, I’ll treat you – the seller said – come in, I will cook you a bowl.

A few minutes later the owner brought her a steaming bowl of noodles. Ate some pieces, Sue cried.

– What is it? – He asked.

– Nothing. I am just touched by your kindness! – Sue said as she wiped her tears.

– Even a stranger on the street gives me a bowl of noodles, and my mother, after a quarrel, chased me out of the house. She is cruel!!

The seller sighed:

– Girl, why did you think so? Think again. I only gave you a bowl of noodles and you felt that way. Your mother had raised you since you were little, why were you not grateful and disobeyed your mom?

Sue was really surprised after hearing that.

“Why did I not think of that? A bowl of noodles from a stranger made me feel indebted, and my mother has raised me since I was little and I have never felt so, even a little.”

On the way home, Sue thought in her head what she would say to her mother when she arrives home: “Mom, I’m sorry. I know it is my fault, please forgive me … ”

Once up the steps, Sue saw her mother worried and tired of looking for her everywhere. Upon seeing Sue, her mother gently said: “Sue, come inside honey. You are probably very hungry? I cooked rice and prepared the meal already, come eat while it is still hot …”

Can not control any longer, Sue cried in her mom’s hands.

 

In life, we sometimes easy to appreciate the small actions of some people around us, but for the relatives, especially parents, we see their sacrifices as a matter of natural …

Parental love and concern are the most precious gifts we have been given since birth.

Parents do not expect us to pay back for nurturing us …… but have we ever appreciated or treasure the unconditional sacrifice of our parents?

Translated from a Vietnamese story

25 ‘Get to Know Me’ Questions

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As many of you know, I do not write much and share posts instead to help motivate you.

This post is so you can all get an inside look at myself and what I am about, please read and hopefully we have something in common…

  1. What is your middle name? Anthony, I know initials are SAD!!! Ha
  1. What was favourite subject at school? I loved History and P.E – Still have a passion or history and I often workout to keep myself as fit as I can be.
  1. What is your favourite drink? I LOVE tea and drink so much mineral water it gets out of hand. Occasional Red Wine always helps!
  1. What is your favourite song at the moment? Love all things Ed Sheeran at the moment like so many others! And most teenage girls…ha!
  1. What is your favourite food? Steak and Rice is a fave for me. I also love experimenting with Italian dishes.
  1. What is the last thing you bought? Wireless Earphones
  1. Favourite Colour? Green- Love country scenes and green landscapes
  1. Do you have any pets? 2 dogs – So cute and will be sharing images soon.
  1. Favourite animal? Lion – I love the strength and survival instincts of a Lion
  1. Favourite Holiday? Cape Verde in July coming… ha!
  1. Are you married? Nope! Never been and no kiddies…yet!!
  1. Have you ever been out of the country, if so how many times? Lots of times to many places. Please ask?
  1. Do you speak any other language? I do yes. Spanish and Hungarian and learning mandarin – Trying mind! So, tough…
  1. How many siblings do you have? I am the oldest of 5.
  1. What is your favourite shop? Zara.
  1. Favourite restaurant? Simpsons – Birmingham!
  1. When was the last time you cried? Can’t remember although I am emotional at times…
  1. Favourite Movie? Wall Street, Law Abiding Citizen, Shawshank Redemption, Boiler Room, Glengarry Glenross, The Pursuit of Happyness and so many more…
  1. Favourite TV shows? Big Bang Theory, Only Fools and Horses, The Office, Suits, Pretty Little Liars haha!
  1. PC or Mac? PC
  1. What phone do you have? IPhone 6 Plus S
  1. How tall are you? 5; 11
  1. Can you cook? YES – want to try some?

This was fun and I hope it helped you get an insight into me, please let me know if we have anything in common?