Faith Renewed

on April 13, 2009

I don’t always have a positive outlook on people in general. Let’s face it, this world can be a pretty messed up place. But thankfully, things happen often enough to renew my faith in human-kind. One of those things happened this weekend.

I live in a large military area and while living here, you get used to seeing soldiers everywhere. Men and women in uniform blanket this area, so to say patriotism is an everyday thing is an understatement.

This weekend I flew my daughter half way across the country, then turned around and flew home a little over 12 hours later. By the time I got on my last flight back to Norfolk, I had been traveling for about 28 hours and just wanted to get home. I flew Southwest and if you haven’t taken that airline lately, there are no assigned seats. You get a letter and number and that combination tells when you can get on the plane. Once on, you sit wherever you can find a seat. The early boarding combinations are highly desired if you don’t want to be in the last row…in a middle seat.

Saturday afternoon, in the Baltimore airport, before anyone else boarded, the Southwest rep came on the intercom and asked if there were any military personnel in uniform on this flight. He offered that they pre-board first. One soldier walked to the door, and the rest of us applauded. My faith was once again renewed. Maybe we human beings aren’t so messed up after all.

Here’s a video of a performance from the Academy of Country Music awards held recently in Las Vegas. It’s Trace Adkins performing with the West Point Glee Club on a song called ‘Til the Last Shot’s Fired. The video and song are available at or iTunes and the proceeds benefit the Wounded Warriors organization. It’s less than $3 and it’ll make you feel better about human-kind.


What I Want

on July 2, 2008

I’ve been preaching this positive thinking thing for a while. I’m no Pollyanna, but I’m close. My mantra is, “If you expect bad things to happen, then bad things will happen.” It’s sort of a longer way to say, “Have faith!” What people might not realize is that I haven’t always been this way.

I grew up in a family constantly looking over their collective shoulders. Very superstitious and very negative. There was always some disaster waiting around the corner for us to walk by so he could pounce. And if some misery did befall us, it was never due to our own actions or choices. Nope, it was the Universe conspiring against us.

A few years ago, I met someone who had a completely opposite view of life. He changed my life in many ways, but one of the best things he did for me was teach me to have faith. And I’m not talking religion. I have that kind of faith as well, but this is more faith in the Universe or Karma or whatever other force you want to imagine.

My mantra comes straight from my friend. He certainly said it to me often enough. The clincher happened when I followed his advice and noticed a real change. When I stopped waiting for the other shoe to fall, it didn’t. When I stopped expecting things to go wrong, they didn’t.

Now I have another friend who has gotten on this positive train with me. We’ve put a new plan into action where we are not only thinking positively, we’re writing it down. Sounds easy enough, right? Wrong.

I started writing my “What I Want” list today and found it’s harder than I expected. First, you have to know what you want. If I knew that, I probably wouldn’t need the list. Determined, I started typing and what I want sort of just showed up on the page. It’s a good list. Not too crazy, but no lowering of standards. That’s good for me. Since the list is quite personal, I won’t share the entire thing. But I will share the last bit because I figure it’s likely what most people want.

I want the courage to set my goals high, to accomplish those goals, and to push others to reach their true potential. I want to show my daughter how important it is to live, to laugh, and to love, but most of all to love herself. I want to be as healthy as I can be and to love myself enough to do what it takes to stay that way.

Do you believe you’re a positive person? What do you do to keep the faith? Have you tried making a list like this and if not are you willing to try? What are some of the (not so personal) things you’d put on your list? And I think we can all agree World Peace is on all our lists so we’ll call that a given.