Monday, June 1, 2009

Leader Enterprise - June 2009 - Lesson in Humility

A favorite quote, that I often share is...Life is 10% what happens to you, and 90% how you respond to what happens to you. I believe I was recently ‘tested’ to see how much I really believe it.

I am always honored to speak to ladies groups, and have learned to enjoy my time behind the podium. A few years ago, I wouldn’t have imagined myself being able to stand in front of a group. Even 15 years ago, I was nervous about walking through a crowded room, but I have learned to enjoy it, and believe’s a big surprise to even me!

As I had prepared to speak for a Mother/Daughter luncheon in West Unity in May, I was anticipating my time with this group...until the very morning that I speak.

My hubby had just fixed us our first cups of coffee that morning, and as I bit open the protein bar to enjoy it too, a front tooth, broke in half. Not today Lord!!! Not now!! The same tooth had been repaired a time or two before, but hadn’t been a recent problem, so I was stunned when it broke. In fact, the last time it broke was on Christmas Eve, and I had to wait until after Christmas get it fixed.

But now I was suppose to be standing in front of a group of women - in a couple of short hours - to encourage them as moms and grandmas, and I felt traumatized. What a way to begin my day. UGH!

I called a dear friend who faithfully prays for me, and we had some good laughs. I told her how I’d tried putting a marshmallow between my teeth to see if it would fill the gap - and she told me to be sure to share with the ladies about my ‘experiment’, so we did have a good laugh, or two.

When I stood to speak, I felt like I just HAD to explain my predicament before I could begin sharing what I had prepared, and I began crying, then started laughing because I was crying...oh my! They were such gracious ladies, and made me feel at ease. And I told them I had been reminded in a BIG way that my time with them was and not about me, but it was about Him. so we did have a great time together. One lesson in humility lesson learned and will not be forgotten any time soon.

I had to consider that things could have been worse. If we will be determined, I believe we can always find something to be thankful for, even in the worst of times. I could have broken my glasses, and not been able to read my notes. But I was able to talk, even with a broken tooth. Reminds me of something I once read, spoken by a man who had just been robbed. He was thankful that he was the one who was robbed, and not the one who had done the robbing. I find that to be an admirable perspective.

Do we practice what we ‘preach’? It’s so much easier to SAY sometimes, than to DO. I like to think I passed the ‘test’ that God was allowing that day. I truly DO believe life is about how we respond to what happens to us. The next time ‘life hands you lemons’ I trust you’ll be able to make lemonade, and be encouraged to smile (even with a broken tooth).

Hubby and I were recently delighted to go a day trip with Evelyn’s Excursions. We enjoyed a Benny Goodman concert in Toledo. We had a delicious lunch inside the Stranahan Theatre, and the soothing music was relaxing and enjoyable. Evelyn has a lot of great trips planned - many are day getaways. I want to encourage you to take time to enjoy yourself this summer. Call someone you’ve been wanting to visit and invite them to travel with you. You can enjoy yourselves and each other at the same time.

Because this is Father’s Day month, I want to pay tribute to my own dear dad - Bob King. He’s ALWAYS told me I’m his favorite daughter! ( I’m the only one he has, so he’s been safe to tell me that all my life.) My children have always smiled when they’re around their grandpa, and they have told me often “I didn’t even do anything, and grandpa said he’s proud of me!” can imagine just HOW proud he is, when we DO do something worthwhile! One thing my family will always remember about my dad is that he often tells us that he loves us, and to ‘keep the faith’. How thankful I am for a dad who has always made me feel loved unconditionally.

I also had a great relationship with my father-in-love too, John Baker. He was taken from us at the age of 49 in an electrical accident in Montpelier in 1970.

Many of you may remember that John conducted Memorial Day services in

Montpelier for many years. He was definitely an advocate for veterans for the state, and I’m so thankful he loved me as his own daughter. He’s missed much and remembered fondly.

And I don’t want to forget to mention my own husband, who is a wonderful father and Papa to our 3 children and 7 grandchildren. He is such a great example of giving your kids roots, and then giving them wings. Even with all his physical limitations, being 100% disabled, he goes the extra mile for anyone in his family, and is a true friend to others as well. He’s definitely my man of steel and velvet and is greatly admired and respected by all who are fortunate enough to cross his path on life’s journey.

Plans are being made for Pioneer Days, scheduled for June 26-27. We’d love to have a great turnout for a wonderful celebration with a band, the fire department open house, and much more. Many fun activities for kids and their families are set in motion. Come One - Come All!

My mind has been spinning with numerous recipe ideas to help you celebrate the upcoming birthday of our nation on July 4th.

It’s easy enough to use a purchased pound cake - lay slices of it in the bottom

of a rectangular dish, top with blueberries and strawberries, and then

whipped topping, and decorate the top like a flag, with more blueberries and strawberries. Or you can bake a cake from a mix, in a 9" X 13" pan, and

decorate it likewise.

You can layer berries with pudding or whipped topping in a bowl, and decorate the

top with an outline of blueberries in a star shape, and fill the inside with

strawberries, or raspberries, if you prefer. Or just make layers in parfait cups

for individual servings.

I love the idea of using the store-bought hoho cake rolls to make ‘dynamite’. Use a little string of licorice to make a wick -Stack a few together and tie with a piece of licorice - to add a ‘blast’ to your holiday.

 Bake cupcakes (we love them in ice cream cones) and sprinkle the frosting with red, white & blue edible decorations. Or just celebrate with a McDonald’s healthy yogurt/fruit parfait. I enjoy them often!

Whatever you decide to do, make it simple and fun and enjoy yourself as we have so much to be thankful for. We can always be grateful to live in the land of the free and home of the brave, and be proud of our country! Let’s not hesitate to throw a big birthday party for the good ole USA!

Thought for the Day: We cannot direct the wind, but we can adjust the sails. -

Bertha Calloway