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The Rose

I was looking at a rose this morning,
It’s outer petals all torn.
It didn’t hang its head in shame
As it faced the coming dawn.
It’s inner petals were soft and perfect
And velvet to my touch.
The rose cared not about it’s outer petals –
They didn’t matter much.
It knew what’s inside that matters;
And that was perfect to the core.
It gladly gave its fragrance and beauty,
And didn’t ask for more.
|And so it stood in the morning light;
A gift for all to see –
Perfect on the inside,
And happy – just to be.
I realized I’m like that rose –
The outer layer all torn.
But deep inside – in the heart of me –
I’m as perfect as when I was born.
So I’ll take away that outer layer –
The one I thought was me;
And let others see the light inside
That’s radiant, joyous and free.   

Written by Elizabeth

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The Race

And some people call them retarded……

A few years ago, at the Seattle Special Olympics, nine contestants, all physically or mentally disabled, assembled at the starting line for the 100 yard dash.

At the gun, they all started out, not exactly in a dash, but with a relish to run the race to the finish and win. All, that is, except one little boy who stumbled on the asphalt, tumbled over a couple of times, and began to cry.

The other eight heard the boy cry. They slowed down and looked back. Then they all turned around and went back. Every one of them!

One girl, with Down’s Syndrome, bent down and kissed him and said: “This will make it all better.” Then all nine linked arms and walked together to the finish line.

Everyone in the stadium stood, and the cheering went on for several minutes.

People who were there are still telling the story.

Why?

Because deep down we know this one thing: What matters in this life is more than winning for ourselves. What matters in this life is helping others to win, even it means slowing down and changing our course.

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One Small Gesture ( You never know when you are making a difference.)

One day, when I was a freshman in high school,
I saw a kid from my class was walking home from school.
His name was Kyle.
It looked like he was carrying all of his books.

I thought to myself, “Why would anyone bring home all his books on a Friday?
He must really be a nerd.”
I had quite a weekend planned (parties and a football game with my friends tomorrow afternoon), so I shrugged my shoulders and went on.

As I was walking, I saw a bunch of kids running toward him.
They ran at him, knocking all his books out of his arms and tripping him so he landed in the dirt.
His glasses went flying, and I saw them land in the grass about ten feet from him.
He looked up and I saw this terrible sadness in his eyes

My heart went out to him. So, I jogged over to him as he crawled around looking for his glasses, and I saw a tear in his eye.
As I handed him his glasses, I said, “Those guys are jerks.
They really should get lives. ”

He looked at me and said, “Hey thanks!”
There was a big smile on his face.
It was one of those smiles that showed real gratitude.
I helped him pick up his books, and asked him where he lived.
As it turned out, he lived near me, so I asked him why I had never seen him before.
He said he had gone to private school before now.

I would have never hung out with a private school kid before.
We talked all the way home, and I carried some of his books.
He turned out to be a pretty cool kid.

I asked him if he wanted to play a little football with my friends
He said yes.

We hung out all weekend and the more I got to know Kyle, the more I liked him, and my friends thought the same of him.
Monday morning came, and there was Kyle with the huge stack of books again.
I stopped him and said, “Boy, you are gonna really build some serious muscles with this pile of books everyday!”
He just laughed and handed me half the books.

Over the next four years, ! Kyle and I became best friends.
When we were seniors, we began to think about college.

Kyle decided on Georgetown, and I was going to Duke.

I knew that we would always be friends, that the miles would never be a problem.
He was going to be a doctor, and I was going for business on a football scholarship.

Kyle was valedictorian of our class.
I teased him all the time about being a nerd.
He had to prepare a speech for graduation.
I was so glad it wasn’t me having to get up there and speak

Graduation day, I saw Kyle.
He looked great.
He was one of those guys that really found himself during high school.
He filled out and actually looked good in glasses.
He had more dates than I had and all the girls loved him.
Boy, sometimes I was jealous.
Today was one of those days.
I could see that he was nervous about his speech.
So, I smacked him on the back and said, “Hey, big guy, you’ll be great!”
He looked at me with one of those looks (the really grateful one) and smiled.
“Thanks,” he said.

As he started his speech, he cleared his throat, and began:
“Graduation is a time to thank those who helped you make it through those tough years.
Your parents, your teachers, your siblings, maybe a coach…but mostly your friends…
I am here to tell all of you that being a
friend to someone is the best gift you can give them.
I am going to tell you a story.

I just looked at my friend with disbelief as he told the story of the first day we met.
He had planned to kill himself over the weekend.
He talked of how he had cleaned out his locker so his Mom wouldn’t have to do it later and was carrying his stuff home.
He looked hard at me and gave me a little smile.
“Thankfully, I was saved.
My friend saved me from doing the unspeakable.”
I heard the gasp go through the crowd as this handsome, popular boy told us all about his weakest moment
I saw his Mom and dad looking at me and smiling that same grateful smile.
Not until that moment did I realize it’s depth.

Never underestimate the power of your actions.
With one small gesture you can change a person’s life.
For better or for worse.

Author unknown ( Supplied by e-mail)

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Getting in Touch With Me.

I’m feeling angry and misunderstood
And people are getting me down.
The days are too hot and the nights too cold;
I’m looking at life with a frown.
I’m doing the gardening but not smelling the roses;
Everything seems out of whack.
A friend hurt me the other day
And I’ve even wondered about “getting her back”.
Life’s just too busy and I feel ‘fed up’
I’m out of balance it’s plain to see.
I know I need to make the time –
To get in touch with me.
I feel so impatient some of the time
When someone just wants a hand.
And I get all stressed out when something turns up
That wasn’t quite what I planned.
I’m feeling out of breath and pulled this way and that
There’s not enough time in the day.
I don’t feel like talking to anybody;
I just want them all to go away.
I’m feeling judgemental and I don’t like that
I know it’s not the way to be;
But it’s very hard to look at things straight –
When I’m not in touch with me.
This morning when I woke I made a choice
To take some time for me.
I even rested and did absolutely nothing;
Feeling happy – just to be.
I read a story that inspired me;
I gardened – but also smelled the flowers.
I sat under a tree, then hugged one or two
And just breathed in their magnificent powers.
The anger and impatience is starting to go;
And that hurtful friend, I’ll send love, then just let her be.
Some uplifting music touched my soul –
I’m getting in touch with me.
I noticed the beautiful birds overhead;
I admired the sky; that’s strange – it’s bluer today!
And I don’t think I’ll feel so sensitive
To the hurtful things some people say.
I’m feeling a peace starting to creep in
That hasn’t been there in a long time.
And this road of life that I’m travelling on
Doesn’t seem such a steep climb.
I’m experiencing joy in the simple things;
It feels so good just to be.
And I’ve realised out of all this
That I like getting in touch with me.
Written by Elizabeth