Over the last couple months, I have been thinking about all the accomplishments and blessings I have been given. To consider the fact that once abandoned on a street corner as a kid by my mother, spent time in an orphanage and foster care, life has been so very good to me. I want to take some time and acknowledge what I think is the reason for the gifts I have been given. They are listed in the order of importance (my opinion).

  1. God and my faith
  2. My marriage
  3. Keeping my word
  4. Willingness to listen
  5. Work ethic

I have been fortunate to have been lent special gifts from God. He has watched over me during good times and bad and I cannot imagine not having a belief in a higher power. It truly has been when I most needed his help, that things have happened to keep my faith. The power of prayer is something I can only encourage to others. Unless you feel that you are a god, you must believe that there is a higher power than yourself. Keep your faith and let others determine if it is right for them.

My good fortune was to find my special friend and soul mate when I was quite young. Being seventeen and knowing that a lifetime commitment is being made may not be for everyone, but for me it wasn’t even a second thought. Getting married young and staying true to the oath made before God has been a special part of my life. Deciding to start our family when we didn’t have much not only helped us but provided a good base for our children. I believe too many people wait for the perfect time to get married and/or to start their families.

“A promise made is a debt unpaid.” These are words I have patterned my life after. Don’t make promises or oaths that you are not willing to live by. My hope is to be remembered as someone who’s word was his bond. I sign a lot of paperwork that is prepared by attorneys and it has always been my opinion that if everyone would keep their word, we wouldn’t need reams of paper that no one reads and does nothing but kills trees. Keep your word and you never have stress.

Two ears and one mouth. If you listen to others, you will learn much and the combined intellect will take you further than trying to know everything. I have had many, over the course of my lifetime, who shared with me their thoughts and ideas. From these, I have been able to glean enough information to make informed decisions that have brought about change. I have been most fortunate to have children who are not only intelligent but willing to voice those thoughts that make for strong decisions.

Finally, a strong work ethic is needed to make things happen. Never being satisfied with the status quo brings about change. For me, I continue to think the future will be better than the past. Many people ask me when I will retire and my answer has been and continues to be, “not sure I will ever retire.” I enjoy seeing the future come to life and watching others grow and succeed. That includes not only my immediate family but those who I know through business and social circles. I truly want everyone to grow to their upmost potential.

God bless everyone.