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Monday, September 21, 2015

A Few Simple Words

Have you ever had a friend suddenly turn their back on you? It can be extremely painful and I know that because it has happened to me several times.

Just last month I had a close friend that I have known for many years write me a really harsh email accusing of something I didn’t do. I immediately tried to contact him to straighten out the situation but he wouldn’t take my call. I still feel really bad and totally confused because I don’t know why he would assume bad things about me without even talking to me, but I guess I just have to get over it and move on. I may never know what happened but I do know a true friend doesn’t do that to someone they care about. I will get over it eventually but I have to say…it sure felt bad.

Then last week a young man who worked for me for several years at my previous company stopped by my office. He was all smiles as he came in the front door and it was so great to see him. We gave each other a hug and a handshake and sat down to talk for a minute. He told me how much he missed working for me and how my faith in him had given him faith in himself. He said working for me felt like being part of a family where everyone truly cares about each other. He also reminded me of the time I visited him at a jobsite and gave him a handwritten note of encouragement. He remembered it really well because he still carries that note with him wherever he goes. When he showed it to me, it surprised me, and I have to say…it sure felt good.

Years ago, when I wrote a simple note of praise to a young man who worked for me, I did so because I felt he deserved it. I didn’t know then that it would make such a powerful impact on him. I also did not know that years later that very same note would come back and make a powerful impact on me as well. In fact, it made me realize that I shouldn’t waste time feeling bad about a friend who bailed out on me because a true friend doesn’t disappear when there’s a problem, they try hard to work things out because that’s what real friends do. Instead I am going to remember to focus my time, energy and words on doing good for others. I’m going to remember that a compliment or a few simple words of praise can have a huge impact when they are offered up with true sincerity.
Friendship isn’t a big thing — it’s a million little things.
~ Anonymous

Tuesday, September 15, 2015

The Sporting Life

Looking back at my life I realize that because I never got to play sports as a kid, I have been trying to make up for it as a grown man! When I was young my Dad was in the Marine Corps and we kept moving all over the county, so it was hard to join a sports team. Then later on in life I got married and was busy raising four kids, so that left me very little recreational time as well. But now, as an “older man” I am having a blast every week. Besides playing baseball with the Halo Baseball Club for the past 12 years, I also work out regularly and have tried my hand at volleyball, tennis, golf and paddle boarding…and I absolutely love every sport I try.

I don’t know what it is that makes sporting events so fun but I am sure I am not alone in my love of sports, both playing and watching them. On Saturday last week I went to see a Pop Warner Football Game that my youngest grandson was playing in. The teams are made up of 5-7 year old boys and I was really impressed with what I saw. They played on a full size High School Field (Tesoro High) with regular football uniforms and pads. They had coaches, referees, statisticians and assistants (Moms) distributing Gatorade on the sidelines just like in real football. Not only that, they had a whole bunch of really cute 6 year old Cheerleaders pumping up the crowd in the bleachers. Quite an awesome site!

I know some people might think it’s crazy to involve kids as young as five in sports, especially football, but the more I think about it the more I see the potential benefits in it. I’ll give you an example. During the game, right after the whistle blew on a pass play, one of the smallest kids on the field walked over to a bigger kid who was still on the ground and kicked him right in the stomach. It was probably retaliation for something I didn’t see earlier, but the referee threw a flag, the team received a penalty and the tiny kid who did the kicking got a stern lecture from the coach about the rules of the game. I’m pretty sure the lecture included the following, “If you want to win the game, you have to play by the rules.”

And isn’t that the way it is in life as well? In life we find ourselves on all kinds of teams; our family team, our team of friends, our office team and maybe even a fun sports team. But no matter what kind of a team it is, we can’t win if we don’t play by the rules…and you’re never too young to learn that lesson!

Colin Hunnel, #75, Tesoro Titans (Age 5)

“And also if anyone competes in athletics, he is not
crowned unless he competes according to the rules."
~ 2 Timothy 2:5