“Many times a day I realize how much my own life is built on the labours of my fellowmen, and how earnestly I must exert myself in order to give in return as much as I have received.” — Albert Einstein
It’s Friday and I am feeling reflective. I look at my students, especially those I have tutored for awhile, and I am thrilled to see them growing, maturing, learning, and becoming the people God created them to be. How blessed I am to have them in my life….to help their kites launch.
I think about the people who have influenced my life. My extraordinary parents and brothers. We have so many memories together….they helped me to broaden my horizons to include others. My fantastic grandparents, aunts, uncles and cousins did likewise. There was a lot of laughter, a lot of hollering and discussions. There were countless meals together over the years. We all lived in the same town for a little while. By the time I was in high school (and in some cases much earlier) my cousins were spread across the map. I often say that a cousin is the perfect relationship. For a cousin is a forever friend; a cousin is a sibling you don’t ever have to live with but always want to live with.
My aunts and uncles believed in me always~and urged each of us to aim high and love always. My teachers~gosh where would I be without them? They, too, believed in me and inspired me. So you see, the compassionate side of me, the one that is optimistic, loving, loyal~well, that structure of caring that is me, comes from the gifts God gave me. The gifts that built my life are the people and opportunities that lead me still. Sometimes loving people carry me, and sometimes I carry them. I am sure you know what I mean.
The way to show gratitude is to not only be grateful and thankful to the people who gave to me (and of course to God)~ but to offer that wonderful gift to all the people I can. These days I feel a sense of urgency. The time to give and offer hope is now.
Our time is limited~ we can’t procrastinate on the opportunity to offer love and hope. Throughout my days, I am well aware that people gave and give to me. I am not deserving of the continual floods of grace that God has and continues to wash over me. He fills my days with memories of past kindnesses…on days when I do not have the opportunities to be around friends, family, and others, I have the memories of past experiences.
Whether I am reflecting on past memories or building new ones, the message is the same. Continue to build the city of God.