Monthly Archives: November 2012

Have You Given Your Best…….Really?

We all desire more for our lives, do we not?  Of course we do.  And I am not speaking of material things.  That beautiful home sitting splendidly upon it’s well-landscaped acres or that luxury automobile or any other thing that we would simply love to have as perhaps a reward for our efforts?  These things are fine in their proper place.  But they are secondary really and most often a direct result of pursuing the passion that Life has placed in our spirit, of fulfilling our Destiny.  And it goes without saying that in order to realize our Destiny, we must give nothing less than our best.  No one could dispute this fact.  What I often take issue with is our perception of what our best is in today’s world.  What we deem as our best has become skewed because the emphasis is placed on that word “our”.  Allow me to explain what I mean, as best I know how.  Please indulge me for a time because I believe this will begin to make a degree of sense as we move along this avenue of thought.

Now I am sure you would agree that in order for one to move in the direction of their dreams and goals, the must be an exertion of some sort.  There must be effort put forth.  One cannot expect a harvest if one is not willing to first till the soil and then plant the seeds that will bring forth the crop expected.  But after the planting of the seed, there is more work required, yes?  Proper fertilization and aeration of the soil is needed. And those young seeds must be watered and special attention must be given there as well.  If there is too much water given, the crop will fail before it even gets started growing.  Too little water will bring about the same result.  You see, in order for that farmer to rule his land and enjoy its abundance, he must realize that he is first and foremost a servant to the very seeds he has planted.  In doing so, the farmer learns what it is to respect those things that are placed just below his feet, if you will.  He comes to realize that the very abundance he desires is brought about through a joint effort.  The farmer serves the seed and soil. His reward is that the seed and soil return the favor.  This makes sense, does it not?  It is only the wise husbandman who can appreciate the privilege of serving that will ever come to realize true abundance in the yearly harvest.  They give their best during the growing season to obtain their reward.  And the best they can give is their service to that which is outside of themselves.

The same concept applies in our own lives.  We may not be looking for a bumper crop of corn or wheat or soy beans, to be sure.  But just like the farmer, we want high yields from our lives.  So, we start in pursuit of goals and dreams and go after them doggedly and feeling that we are indeed giving it our best.  However, it seems that somewhere along the line in our world, we have forgotten what it means to truly give our best.  Giving our best means to embrace the idea of service to others.  It means to realize the importance of those around us and to appreciate the fact that to serve, to give of one’s self to others not only serves to prepare us for greatness in our own lives but of even greater significance, we learn that serving others is a privilege.  It is also an honor and one not be taken lightly.

And there may be some reading this who disagree and believe that the idea of serving others will provide the foundation on which to build up something truly magnificent is just foolishness.  To anyone with that mindset, I would encourage you to do two things.  The first item is to study your history.  It will bear out the truth of what is being written here.  It is only when the great kingdoms and nations of our world chose to forget what it meant to serve that those same kingdoms and nations laid themselves to ruin.  Here is the second suggestion I would have for this evening.  Give yourself the opportunity, the privilege of going out to serve others for a bit of time.  There are many ways to do such a thing.  Give a visit to a homeless shelter and help with the serving of food there.  And if you are particularly bold, spend a few moments with those who frequent there and learn from them.  If a person feels trust for you, they will share with you.  You might be quite surprised at what you may learn.  And my friend, perhaps what is the greatest thing is that you will feel your heart and spirit growing.  The growth you feel will be a direct result of serving those around you.  You may wonder who is the real beneficiary in this transaction of humanity.  Is it you benefitting or them?  I’ll let you in on a little secret here…..When it comes to serving others, it is a win-win, as the saying goes.

I should mention as well that homeless shelters is only one of the opportunities available to us all.  There are nursing homes where many of the folks are simply left behind.  To visit them and share your time with them, to serve them would bring honor to not only their heart but to your own spirit as well.  There are so many ways to serve and I could name many.  There are everyday ways to serve as well.  Do you recall that day when you noticed that elderly women struggling to get her coat on or having a difficult time with those grocery bags?  Yet another chance to serve, to bless and be blessed in return.   Do some investigating on your own and discover the avenues of service that are out there.

I suppose my intent here this evening is to cause us, you and I to reflect a bit and remember what the term  giving it our best” really means.  The best we can do is really all about the best we can give of ourselves, yes?  Just like the farmer, the best thing we can do to ensure an abundance in our lives is to give ourselves the gift of serving others.  My friends, give this idea thought and then act upon your thinking.  Trust me, when you begin giving your best, and I mean this in the true sense of the word, you will experience a growth as yet unknown to you.  And that growth within your spirit and your heart will pave the way to the true greatness that your Creator has waiting for you.

One other thing that I failed to mention?  Or perhaps I was just saving the best for last?  If we as a people can learn and practice the gift of service to others, do you realize we can change the world?  This is a truism, friends.  And that is power!  Hmmmmm……Now who would’ve thought that servants could wield the type of power that could change the world we live in?  Think about it, if you would.

I thank you once again for your indulgence as I tend to ramble at times and I thank you for your kind attention.  I do hope that the words here will be of benefit to you.  May the fullness of this day be yours to share.  Blessings to you and yours.

Authored by William J. Thompson, Jr.

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Are You In Harmony With The Life That Life Has For You?

Have you ever had a time in your life when all things seemed to be in accord with one another?  Have you ever experienced a segment of your life that could only be described as though it were a beautiful symphony being played to the benefit of yourself and as a direct result, was a benefit to all those you came in contact with?  I believe that most of us have experienced this at some point in our lives.  It is a moment that you enjoy as one would a sumptuous meal, relishing the taste of each wonderful course as it is presented to you and drinking in deeply and slowly the fine wine that accompanies such a feast.  At those junctures in our lives, we are aware that we have within us the capability and power to accomplish any task set before us.  It is at these times, we are in harmony with the life that Life has for us.  We experiencing living life through our higher self, through a higher level of consciousness.  It is in those times that we are living Life as it was meant to be lived.

Now some may say that this line of thinking is a little too “cosmic” or spiritualistic and that life is actually based on rational and logic alone.  And if this is what you choose to believe, that is of your choosing.  But just for the sake of discussion, let us take a look at the times in our lives when harmonic balance is not present.  Those periods are times when things are not working in accord with one another. Quite to the contrary, things are disjointed, fragmented and actually seem to be making a conscious effort to work against each other which only serves to raise our frustration level and disrupt what little peace we have left within ourselves.  You have experienced this, haven’t you?  Those times when you find that despite your best efforts, the phrase “I just can’t seem to catch a break!” along with some other poorly chosen words spew forth from your ungrateful lips.  Instead of a gourmet meal, it seems you’ve been handed a sack of some fast-food fare from the bottom of the proverbial food chain along with a watered-down Coke.

What point am I making here?  It is quite simply this……Examine your feelings and even more importantly, your thought patterns during each interlude.  During that harmonious period  in your life,  what were your thoughts like?  And what were the adverse situations that were going on just outside that wonderful “harmonic bubble” you were encased in, seeming to insulate you from the slings and arrows of Life?  Because of this you may be sure…..There were still adverse conditions going on.  Life is imperfect and adversity will always be waiting not too terribly far from your doorstep.  It is the way of it.  But you see my friend, it is always our thoughts that will determine the degree of harmony in our lives.  Notice I said our thoughts and not our actions here.  This is simply because it is our thoughts that determine our actions.  And if we do nothing, if we choose not to act in any given situation, we are still taking action, the action of inactivity.  But the point remains, when our thoughts come through from a higher level (our higher self), the negative forces that come from what is outside have a lesser effect on us.  The “harmonic bubble” I mentioned previously?  It is not a bit of cosmic magic, if you will.  We create that bubble by way of our thought patterns.  Similarly, in those times of disharmony in our lives we fail to create this “harmonic bubble” and are therefore wide open to the adversarial attacks of our surrounding world.  And we fail to do so by allowing our thought processes to drop down to the basest of levels.  We are created in Spirit and it is in our spirit that our higher self resides.  It is however, our option to either learn to access or deny the higher self within, yes?  It would seem to be on the side of prudence and wisdom to be properly armed when heading into a potentially adversarial area.  At least that is how I see it. And if the weaponry is provided, would it not be foolish to not make use of it?

Now to approach the real point of this piece?  Yes, I do tend to ramble a bit at times. I believe it to be genetic, actually.  My Dad is a rambler as well so the burden will rest upon his shoulders.  Besides, in that way it lets me off the hook!  Anyway, this piece is about having harmony in one’s life and how important it is to be in harmony with the life that Life has for each one of us.  And as in all aspects of creation, our Creator has done nothing in an offhand manner.  There is a rhyme and reason to all things.  Achieving consistent harmonic balance in our lives is no different.  It just takes some work and yes, even some change to develop a strong harmonic bubble in our lives.  I mean, those moments of harmony with Life are moments we would like more of, correct?  Okay, we have an accord then, yes?

First of all, we must change the cycling of our thoughts.  Many refer to this as our thought patterns and that would be accurate.  But since the way we tend to think is cyclic, a process which is called repetitive thinking, I feel it more as a cycling of our thoughts.  It was Ralph Waldo Emerson who said “We become what we think about all day long.”  So, in order to develop the strength of our higher self, we must in a sense, censure what we think.  Negative thoughts, self-deprecating thoughts translate directly into behaviors that tear down who we are and thus prevent us from becoming who we were designed to become in this, our World.  If you think about it in this manner, it is actually an act of pure selfishness when we choose not to develop our harmonic balance with Life.  Our gift that we were given to share with the world cannot be realized if we have not the harmony which is God’s gift of strength to us.  Think about it.

Now getting back to the idea of cycling our thoughts.  What is a word directly related to cycle or even cyclic?  Why, the word is “recycle”, of course!  And one of the definitions of the word recycle is “to adapt to a new use; to alter from the original.  And a synonym for the word recycle is the word “reclaim”. Wow!  You just have to love that word, don’t you?  So in order to enjoy and be in harmony with the life that Life has for us, we must recycle our thoughts.  We must reclaim the cycling of our thoughts and by doing so, we alter them from the original and further, we adapt our thoughts to a new use, one which connects us directly to our higher self.  And our higher self is in direct communication with our Source, our Creator.  And all of this follows a logical progression, systematic steps, everything done by design, not by happenstance. 

One last item here, if I may.  Is developing our harmonic bubble an easy undertaking?  No, it is not.  It is simple but not easy.  Essentially, what one is doing is replacing the habit of living in disharmony with the life that Life has for you with the habit of living in harmony with what Life has waiting for you if you prevail.  So, it really comes down to a choice, as it always does.  Do you desire a divine meal which satisfies beyond what words can describe even if that meal does require a degree of effort in its preparation and presentation?  Or would you prefer, as so many do, a paper sack of whatever fast-food is available at the moment?  When you make this choice, remember this……The old adage of “You are what you eat!” goes much further than just the physical aspects of our lives.

As always, thank you for your kind attention.  I trust that what you have read has been of benefit.  Blessings upon you and yours.

Authored by William J. Thompson, Jr

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And Now That The Election Is Over………What Happens Now?

Well my fellow Americans, the votes are coming in and being tabulated.  The media is discussing and forecasting who the new President will be.  The prognosticators are prognosticating and the experts are making themselves heard.  Will the current president remain for another term or will the reins of leadership be turned over to another?  The answer will be made clear in a matter of a few short hours.  And the answer will be of interest to the citizens of this country, myself included.  However, I am going to pose a more interesting question to those of you out there and would be most interested in what your answer would be.  For this question and how it is answered is of far greater importance than the question of who will become our next President.

My question to you, to me and to all of us is a simple one.  What happens now?   The last four years have gone by and our politicians have played the same games that were played in previous years.  Nothing has really changed other than our economy has worsened and our leadership blames this on the leadership that was in place before they got into office.  Which is kind of funny because the administration before our present one made the same statement about the administration that preceded it as well.  And if you look back beyond that administration, you will find the same story repeated again.  And I will mention another parallel to be drawn as well.  In each of these terms of office, our leaders have always voted in favor of themselves receiving annual raises in salary and enhanced benefits.  Oh and lest I forget to mention, if you do your homework on this you will see that the liberties we have enjoyed, those liberties granted us in the Constitution have been decreasing in the last several years and continue to do so.  I don’t know about you, friend but I work the equivalent of 2 jobs to survive and make ends meet.  It would seem to me that we should have a say in how our elected officials are running our country.

I have made mention of this subject before but on this, the night of the presidential election it just seemed rather important to me.  The vast majority of the citizenship of this great country of ours are pretty intelligent folk overall.  So this being the case, why do we allow this to go on, year after year, four-year term after four-year term?  Come on people, be honest with yourselves.  Whether the current president is re-elected or the new fellow gets voted in, do you truly believe in your heart, in your spirit that the game of politics will be played any differently?  You know the answer to this as surely as the sun will break the new dawn.  It will continue to be business as usual in our nation’s capitol.  And the sad part of all this is that we are the one’s responsible for allowing our leaders, our elected officials to continue in this fashion.  It used to be that our senators and our representatives were servants of the citizens who elected them in the first place.  Now they are servants unto themselves.  Yes, I have made that statement before and I am making it again.  And I say it because it is true.

And I apologize if I sound like I am degrading this country because I am not.  I love this, our country.  In actuality, I am not even berating the ones who are in leadership.  I know it sounds that way.  The truth of the matter is that our leaders are human beings and are therefore fallible, as are we all.  And being human, they will take things only as far as the citizens they serve will allow.  So, who am I berating and chastising here, really?  You know this answer as well as you know your own name, don’t you?  I am taking to task the citizens of this country for it is our complacency and apathy that has permitted things to go as far as they have.  I am speaking to myself as well as to anyone else.

Our leaders are elected by the citizenry of the country and therefore are to serve the best interest of said citizenry.  And since our elected officials are indeed voted in by those people they are to serve, those officials, those leaders are to be held to a higher standard.  To whom more responsibility is given, more is expected in return.  In other words, we entrust ourselves and our children to those who we elect to govern our country.  We expect them to act in the best interest of our country.  If this is a responsibility they cannot handle properly or do not intend to handle properly, then they should not have the position so entrusted.  It is quite simple really.  Everything seems to get overcomplicated in today’s world when most things are still easily seen if we take the time to view them through the eyes of what is right and what is wrong.

We still have choices in this country and at present, we still have the time to make some proper choices so as to bring this nation back to greatness.  But time has a tendency to run out and this issue in front of us is a bit more important than trying to get to the shopping mall before it closes or making that deposit in the bank before the doors are locked for the day.  There is quite a bit more at stake here.  And if I may, a quick suggestion for all of us.  If you haven’t ever read the Declaration of Independence or the Constitution of the United States, you should.  It is your birthright as a citizen and besides that, it is pretty interesting stuff.  Oh by the way, you may have noticed that I didn’t mention any names in regards to who is running for office.  That was intentional because it isn’t about who is running for office.  It is about what they will do if elected.  Let us set aside for now who is representing what political party and all the rest of that.  That is a secondary issue at best.

This is our country.  This is our nation.  Therefore, it is our responsibility to keep it on course and in keeping with that, we are accountable for keeping our leaders accountable for how they care for what is our country, our nation and our home.  Let us together bring about the much-needed changes in this land in which we and our children live.  Think about it and then take the next step.  Follow your thought with action.  I love this country and I know you do as well.

Thank you once again for your kind attention this evening.  May your day be blessed and may you bless others in return.

 

William J. Thompson, Jr

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Guard Safely Your Heart…….?

Guard safely your heart.  There is much wisdom in these words, at least on the surface.  A person’s heart is an important thing, a vital thing. I speak not of the physical heart although it is also more than a little important.  No, this evening I speak of the heart which houses our spirit, the heart with which we feel love and give love. The heart with which we accept some and reject others.  The heart which expands to abundance or reduces to poverty the spirit which indwells it, this being contingent upon how we use our heart.  This is making a degree of sense thus far, yes?  It should for I have had more than a little experience in the area of safeguarding my heart.  This by no means makes me unique.  But it does make me a bit of an authority on the subject.

You see, I learned lessons early that caused me to, not turn inward per say but rather to build a rather sturdy wall around the fortress that was my heart.  It was a matter of survival and logic, nothing more.  Please allow me to explain to you a little.  The details shall remain with me for reasons of my own and are actually unnecessary for you to understand my point.  As a young person, I grew up a bit quicker than most.  Some even referred to me back then as “an old soul” which means one who is old beyond their years.  I was a source of wisdom and counseling for more than a few and remarkably enough, I had the answers that were needed.  Looking back, I now know where those answers came from. When one is barely 12 years of age, this is not something that occurs to them.  For the sake of time, I will advance us forward roughly 6 years.  Now, we are seeing a young adult who has become quite drained emotionally and unable to cope as well as one should.  So this fellow decides and takes it upon himself to determine that this will never happen again.  So, the construction of the wall I mentioned begins and is built with care and attention to detail.  It is not carelessly thrown up in a week or in a month.  No, this wall was one designed for survival and protection and the builder of this wall was well-versed in emotional intelligence and in the psychology of the mind.  A pretty sharp fellow really. But wisdom and intellect used incorrectly causes quiet chaos.  You can count on that fact.

So, now we move ahead another 7 years roughly.  Our subject is 25 years of age and well-adjusted, on the surface.  He has a small list of those who he will allow through the gate of his heart.  Sadly, even those few are only allowed a few feet inside that gate.  They can get close enough to almost knock on the front door, but not quite.  As you can imagine, no one gets to come inside for they are not invited to do so.  As for everyone else, they must remain outside the wall for its walls are thick, impenetrable.  Even the gate mentioned here is a formidable one.  Everything has been built to specification, to allow protection and therefore, survival.

Of course, our young hero sadly is unaware that those few he permits just within the gate sense the pain, his pain that he is oblivious to.  Perhaps because a wall such as the one we are talking about requires maintenance.  A new brick here, a bit of mortar there and just a bit more height over on that far wall there. Yes, that’s it!  Strong and safe, once again.  And as for those outside the wall?  They mean nothing and they are nothing, less than nothing actually.  These small threads of thought gain strength and become the ropes which over time bind him within the very walls he built to protect his spirit, his heart.  Rather ironic, isn’t it?

Another 2 years or so pass in this fashion and this poor fellow is alone in his heart and his very soul has become weak due to those heavy ropes of thought which will not allow him to feed his spirit any longer.  Bitterness over his unfortunate life and anger towards all those who give the appearance of having a happy life has starved his spiritual essence to the point where nothing really matters any longer.  The present year is winding down and the New Year will be coming in soon.  “What better time”,  thinks he. “What better time to finish this miserable existence called Life! Life? Now there’s the joke and the joke is on me!”

So, here it is….New Years Eve.  His mind is set and his plan is already in motion now.  He is alone in his apartment and has taken more than a sufficient amount pills to do the job.  But our hero has always been the model of efficiency, leaving no stone unturned and no room for error.  So to insure his success, he is drinking a fifth of whiskey.  No need for a glass here, ladies and gents!  The bottle will suffice.  And now…..yes, it is working now for his dark world is becoming darker, closing in around him now in a kind of bittersweet release.  It is done now.

Well my friends, by all rights it should have been.  However, it has been said that God watches out for children and fools.  And since I am not a child….you figure that one out.  I do remember that I slept for an ungodly amount of time……18 hours or so, near as I can recollect.  There was no hangover but my mind was like a bowl of cold porridge for a good while afterwards.  I would also like to tell you that I set about knocking down that darn wall after that night.  I would like to, but I would be lying.  I am sometimes a slow learner.  But you must give me some credit for I never tried to end my life again.  Eventually as a few years went by, like most of us, I fell in love with someone and gradually that wall which was several feet thick  by then started to come down.  And trust me, it is harder to take it down than it is to build it.  And since I appeared to be a normal, well-adjusted person, the unfortunate one who fell in love with me had no idea what she had gotten into, at first.  I am not proud of myself for some of the years I have lived.  And I would like to say here that I was never abusive in the relationship.  I detest those type of people.  My problem is that I had become emotionally stunted and no longer knew how to interact with love.  I wanted love but was lost for lack of knowledge and experience.

My past has cost me relationships, to be sure.  But I have learned about love and it is an ongoing education for us all.  These days my heart, beyond a heathy concern remains unguarded.  Is there a risk in living that way?  Of course there is. Have I gotten hurt along the way because of my unguarded heart?  Yes, I have.  My friends, Life itself is a risk and love is a big part of Life.  Actually, Life is love and love is Life.  If you doubt this, then just look around you and drink in the beauty of creation, of our world.  Do this with the eyes of your heart open wide and any doubts you may have will leave you.  And if I may, when in love, do not reserve your heart in that love.  I am speaking of all love here. Being in love with Life, being in love with our world and all those who inhabit it and of course, being in love with the one you love.  The only path that leads to what is a true love is that path where one risks all and gives all, knowing that risk, yet pushing forward towards the gift that rewards both the giver and the recipient. For the two are really one, yes?

I would like say here as well that I have never been one to speak of my life, past or present.  I am a rather private person, to be honest.  But I felt impressed to share this with someone out there.  And if what I have written causes one person to choose a different path than the one I had gone down? Enough said.  In closing here, I would say one more thing……..Do not safeguard your heart, please.  Instead I would urge you to risk all for Life and love.  It is worth it.

Thank you for your kind attention here.  Please consider what is written here.

William J. Thompson, Jr.

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Ode To Jenna

Friends, there are occasions in our lives, special occasions when we are given the gift of meeting singular people of character.  People who by their spirit and tenacity for living have an impact on our lives.  In my experience, these meetings are uncommon and should be treated and recognized as what they are…..A gift, nothing less.  There is one such young lady it was my pleasure to have met.  In a space of only a few years, I watched this friend of mine grow through her life.  Growth is not usually easy and her situation was no exception.  She endured much pain and this pain was on all levels.  Physical pain from a bad accident which demanded many visits to the hospital for surgeries and therapies as well as a battle against an infection she contracted while in the hospital.  Emotional and mental pain from a number of life situations that were unfair to one so young.  And one cannot go through these experiences without it affecting their spirit as well.  There were times of tears and periods of doubt that plagued this young woman.  I knew only parts of it.  Much of it she battled on her own.

I am more than happy to say that these days, her life is so much better.  No more visits to the hospital.  She has found love and is more than deserving of it.  I met the fellow and he is a good man and a kind person.  She is very much involved now in rescue operations for neglected and abused animals.  It has become her passion and I am so proud of my good friend.  The poem that follows here was one that I had written for her during one of her hospital stays.  I wrote it because Life was hitting her pretty hard and I did not want her to forget who she was.  Because in the midst of pain, we can forget.  She was in a great deal of pain at that time and to be honest, I am not sure if she ever read it or realized I had given it to her.  But as a tribute to her spirit, I wish to post it here.  She is, as they say, one of the good ones.  I am fortunate to know her.  One additional note, if I may.  Are there any singular people of character you have met along your Life journey?  If this be the case, let them know how special they are.  And do so today for tomorrow is not promised us, yes?

Her heart full of kindness, of caring, compassion.

Her smile, a pleasure, sincere and so warm.

Her laughter, like music, delightful to hear.

Her eyes, wide and luminous, reflects what’s inside.

Her voice, soft and gentle, yet somehow it’s strong,

mirrors the strength from within.

Her manner is poised, tho’ sometimes unsure

as she continues to learn who she is.

Her mind is a wonder, so sharp, so receptive,

her talents are many, some yet undiscovered.

Her emotions are varied but she strives to be happy.

When she speaks, she speaks truth,

there is no guile in her.

These are parts of her character, some things I’ve perceived.

Oft times I do wonder why others do not see what I see.

And oft-times I do wonder if this young woman knows, herself, what I know.

Those who are special are rare, hard to find,

a true gift to this world from the heavens above.

I speak only the truth, Jenna.

Remember that always.

William

 

Authored by William J. Thompson, Jr.

 

 

 

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The Last Word

A few days ago as I was driving, I noticed a sign posted on the front lawn of a church which read “God Has The Last Word”.  My first thought was “I wonder what they are trying to convey here?  Perhaps a reference to the fact the God has the power of Life and Death?”  Then I began thinking what those words really do mean.  Of course, the Creation as well as the cessation of Life are, in fact under the control of our Creator.  But these words “God Has The Last Word” go so much further than this, if one takes a moment to really think about it.

One example that comes to my mind was when the doctors told my uncle he would never walk again.  He had cancer more than once and the chemotherapy treatments destroyed over 80% of the nerves in his legs.  So obviously, the brain could send the signals telling the legs to move but to no avail because those signals were no longer being received by those legs. There was little to no feeling there.  You could punch him in the leg and he would not feel it.  Well, I will tell you that a wise person would not tell my uncle, who was more my brother really, that he could not do something.  He rather impolitely told the doctors what they could do with their diagnosis and declared he would indeed walk again.  It took him over 2 years of self-therapy, over 2 years of standing up only to literally fall on his face in the living room of his home.  When this occurred (and it did often) he would weep tears of frustration, of anger and bitterness and then he would get up and try again. And fall again.  Finally came the day when he was able to, with a cane walk across the living room.  He wept again but this time in happiness and the satisfaction of a great accomplishment.  And when he walked, it was not a normal gait for the leg that carried some sensation had to compensate for the other leg which had none.  He always would say, “Hey, I’m not ready for the 100 hundred dash but I’m doin’ the best with what I have!”   I might add that this fine man walked for another 14 years before he was forced back into a wheelchair.  I was surprised when he broke the news to me that he would be unable to walk much longer.  You see, he had never told anyone that because of his irregular method of walking, he was slowly but steadily wearing down his hip to where it was bone against bone.  Those 14 years of walking which he bought literally by his sweat and pain and courage, all during those years he knew it was only a temporary victory.  That is how much he desired to walk once again.

“Well, that’s a moving story, to be sure!” you might say. “But it seems that your uncle was the one who had the last word”.  I suppose one could say that.  But Who was the One who gave him that stubborn, fighting spirit within that said “No! I will not let you win this one!”  You see my friends, God had the last word in that situation for He gave the gift of determination and tenaciousness to my uncle.  And because of this, Paul indeed had the last word within his heart.  The difference between him and so many others is that he chose to fight for the right and the choice of having his last word.

Does our Creator have the last word in all situations?  Of course He does.  Even on those occasions where God has been persuaded to change His mind on an issue (and that has happened), it is still He who changed His mind.  So, He simply changed the last word, as it were.  I suppose the point I was trying to make here this evening is that this whole idea of having the last word is really a matter of perception, is it not?  Perhaps having the last word is really nothing more than a concerted effort between God and ourselves.  God can do all things on His own but chooses to work through us which is really kind of great to realize.  What I mean is that since God is all-powerful and since He has the last word and since He chooses to do so through His children, we wield a degree of power. And that power used properly can change our world and all those in it.  Think about it.

I trust that what I was trying to get across was understandable or at least relatable. Sometimes what is clear in one’s mind does not translate well through the finger tips.  I thank you for muddling through this one with me and hope it blessed you in some fashion.  May your day be full and rich with joy.

William J. Thompson, Jr

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