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Coming Together to Love, Heal & Empower

Inspiring Stories of Love, Healing, & Empowerment


June 2004
Issue Number 22

Welcome to Inspirations! Global Community For All sends out this e-zine filled with short, inspiring stories of love, healing, and empowerment once every three months. We share these wonderfully inspiring stories to encourage and inspire each other to be the best we can be each day of our lives. Thanks for joining us, and may these words inspire us to ever deepen our commitment to love, heal, and empower; to open to divine guidance; and to choose what's best for all.

Choosing Life - Author Unknown

Michael is the kind of guy you love to hate. He is always in a good mood and always has something positive to say. When someone would ask him how he was doing, he would reply, "If I were any better, I would be twins!" He was a natural motivator. If an employee was having a bad day, Michael was there telling the employee how to look on the positive side of the situation.

Seeing his style really made me curious, so one day I went up to Michael and asked him, "I don't get it. You can't be a positive person all of the time. How do you do it?" Michael replied, "Each morning I wake up and say to myself, 'You have two choices today. You can choose to be in a good mood or you can choose to be in a bad mood.' I choose to be in a good mood. Each time something bad happens, I can choose to be a victim or I can choose to learn from it. I choose to learn from it. Every time someone comes to me complaining, I can choose to accept their complaining or I can point out the positive side of life. I choose the positive side of life."

"Yeah, right, it's not that easy," I protested.

"Yes, it is," Michael said. "Life is all about choices. When you cut away all the junk, every situation is a choice. You choose how you react to situations. You choose how people affect your mood. You choose to be in a good mood or bad mood. The bottom line: It's your choice how you live your life."

I reflected on what Michael said. Soon after, I left the Tower Industry to start my own business. We lost touch, but I often thought about him when I decided to choose life instead of reacting to it.

Several years later, I heard that Michael was involved in a serious accident, falling some 60 feet from a communications tower. After 18 hours of surgery and weeks of intensive care, Michael was released from the hospital with rods placed in his back. I saw Michael about six months after the accident. When I asked him how he was, he replied. "If I were any better, I'd be twins. Wanna see my scars?"

I declined to see his wounds, but I did ask him what had gone through his mind as the accident took place. "The first thing that went through my mind was the well-being of my soon to be born daughter, " Michael replied. "Then, as I lay on the ground, I remembered that I had two choices: I could choose to live or I could choose to die. I chose to live."

"Weren't you scared? Did you lose consciousness?" I asked.

Michael continued, "The paramedics were great. They kept telling me I was going to be fine. But when they wheeled me into the ER and I saw the expressions on the faces of the doctors and nurses, I got really scared. In their eyes, I read 'He's a dead man.' I knew I needed to take action."

"What did you do?" I asked.

"Well, there was a big burly nurse shouting questions at me," said Michael. "She asked if I was allergic to anything. 'Yes', I replied. The doctors and nurses stopped working as they waited for my reply. I took a deep breath and yelled, 'Gravity.' Over their laughter, I told them, 'I am choosing to live. Operate on me as if I am alive, not dead'." Michael lived, thanks to the skill of his doctors, but also because of his amazing attitude. I learned from him that every day we have the choice to live fully.

Every problem has a gift for you in its hands. - Richard Bach

Only One Race–Sheldon Campbell
Edited By Joyce Schowalter

It was 1958 in Deep Creek, Virginia. I was 6 years old, and my father was, like most fathers are to their sons, a superhero to me. It never occurred to me that he had a reason to fear anything, because he never showed any fear. My sister had come running into the house, hollering that a bunch of men with guns were outside.

My dad took a look outside and his face darkened a bit. He stuffed his revolver in his back pocket and, as he went out the door, he told us to go to the kitchen and stay there. My mom and my sister looked scared, and kept pulling me back as I tried to get to the window to watch. Although I never got a very good look, I remember seeing a lot of men, with rifles, shotguns and torches, some of them wearing white robes with hoods. There was a lot of shouting and a fair amount of cussing. Since my dad was a sailor, I recognized some of that.

Finally I heard my dad tell them that if they didn't get off his property right then, and never come back, he'd guarantee that at least six of them would never see their families again. This had started when my father had intervened with a group of young bullies who were roughing up a much younger black kid from down the road. These men were telling my dad that he was forgetting his place, and he'd better remember the way things were.

My dad was white, raised in Meridian, Mississippi during the depression, and he knew very well how things were. But he had also shared foxholes in Guadalcanal, Iwo Jima, and Korea, with other soldiers, who were scared just like him, missing their families like him, and sick of killing like him. Some of them were white like him, and some of them were black, brown or yellow. But they all bled red just like him, and they all got cold, hungry, sick and sad. Just like him.

My father never took his gun out of his pocket that day. Apparently, the men believed him because they left, grumbling and waving their guns. And they never came back. I wasn't old enough to know how dangerous the situation was that day. But my father always taught me that all you really had to do was what you knew was right -- and then things would pretty much take care of themselves. He proved it that day, and on many other occasions.

Dad was raised in a bigoted culture, by bigots, and taught how to act like a bigot. Everything about Mississippi in the depression years screamed of racism. Yet his family taught him to believe in only one race. I guess all those foxhole buddies of his helped confirm what he was taught, because to the day he died, he believed in only one race: the Human Race.

Hatred of evil does not diminish evil, it increases it. - Gary Zukav

The Tapestry We Are–Nancy Smeltzer
[email protected]

I try to attend a certain church when I'm in the San Francisco Bay Area. There are always so many ideas that I hear in the sermons there, that I find myself writing them down fast and furiously. At one such service, I found myself dwelling on an idea that I heard that each of us is a tapestry. As a fiber artist, I loved the image right away.

For my own artwork, I try to make the surfaces as rich as possible, so I began to imagine how people each contain an amazing amount of threads that have been connected throughout their lives. There are those big events that are life shaping. These serve as the framework of a person's make-up. Then, there are the little remembrances that don't come up to the surface very often until something triggers the memory. Maybe it's the kitten that you had as a child, or the red ball that you and your brother played with. When their memory does surface, what a smile it can bring to your face. It's all of these experiences that have been woven into our beings to make up the sum of our lives. Then there are those dark events that we'd rather not remember. Why do they have to be in the fabric of our past?

In my artwork, I rarely rip anything out. My usual mode of operating is to just to keep covering up what I don't like until I do like it. That's also been my usual approach to my life, in that I try to bury the ugly parts of my personality. There's depression, and jealousy, and greed and many other qualities that I don't want the world to associate with me. They aren't "nice." Maybe if I just ignore them, they'll go away, I've often thought. Cover them up, and maybe nobody else will know they exist. Yet all too often, there they are, peaking out from behind the curtains where I've tried to hide them and torturing me with their taunts.

Facing these parts of me that I don't like is a new concept that I'm trying to incorporate into my life practice. A friend has been encouraging me for the last two years to embrace the dark side of me, and allow it to be acknowledged too. What an unusual concept I thought at first. I'd spent my whole life trying to run away from the shadows that kept threatening to engulf me. This road of avoidance had become rutted from all the times that I'd been down it, yet I didn't look for another path.

Now, I'm learning how ill that operating mode served me. I'm finding out that not only is my dark side not so scary when faced, but that there are even some lessons that it can teach me. One plus is that I now know that I can stand up for myself, and that I'm a powerful person. Now, there's a lesson that I never thought I'd learn. Yet, it's allowing me to help others face their own demons, and that's a comforting thought. Maybe I can help someone else's path be a little smoother than mine has been.

So the idea of allowing the darker threads of my life to show is an idea that I'm weaving into my own life. They really are a part of me to be celebrated. There they are before me, dark and light, light and dark. Both are needed to make the complex tapestries that we are.

The Happiest People–Jane Canfield

The happiest people are rarely the richest, the most beautiful, or even the most talented. They do not depend on excitement and fun supplied by externals. They waste no time thinking about greener pastures, nor do they yearn for yesterday or tomorrow. The happiest people savor the moment, glad to be alive, enjoying their work, their families, and the good things around them. They enjoy the simple things of life. The happiest people are also adaptable. They can bend with the wind, adjust to the changes in their times, deal with the contests of life, and feel themselves in harmony with the world. They are aware and compassionate. And most of all, they have the capacity to love. 

All the darkness of the world cannot put out the light of a single candle.

Thanks for sharing in these inspiring stories with us. We wish you lots of love, inspiration, and all the very best in the months ahead.

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