Tuesday, December 21, 2004

It's the season for giving and loving - and for making a difference

The longer I live, the more I realize just how short life really is. I realize there must be more and that this life has to be just a dress rehearsal for something much bigger than any of us can imagine. I can’t explain it any other way.
I am waiting for my grandchildren to grow old enough to fish with me. Sometimes it seems they are stuck at a young age and I may never fish with them. Then there are times that I simply can’t believe how fast they grow.

I think we all reach a time in our lives that makes us look back at all we did, all we accomplished, and yes, all we could have accomplished. Talking to others, it seems we all reach that retrospective attitude at some point later in life. We all wish we had done something different, wish we had studied harder, or wish we had made some different choices.

For me, I think I am reasonably satisfied with my station in life. Oh, I could have studied harder, done some things differently, and not chosen to do some of the really stupid things I did. But, all in all, I think I’m happy.

I have a happy, successful family I love who loves me back, a mother and brother who love and appreciate me for who I am. I had a father who, while he was with us, taught me just about all I know about life. I’m able to enjoy fishing with my sons. I have a wife who understands, or at least tolerates the fishing passion inside me. All I can say is, wow! I could not ask for a whole lot more.

Retirement thoughts and decisions make the rounds every year about this time. Each year, they look a little better. Each year I say, maybe this year. Who knows, maybe it will be this year. Time, as it always does, will tell.

This holiday season is once again driving me to look back at my life. And the question I always end up asking myself is, did I make a difference?

As a Christian, I celebrate Christmas each year with my family. It’s a part of that something bigger I talked about. And as a Christian, I wish each and every one of you a very Merry Christmas this year. For those of you of different faiths, I wish each of you a Happy Holiday season as well.

Whatever your faith is, this week I encourage you to take time to be with your family. Take time to mend a few of the broken things in your life. Swallow your pride at least this one time each year. You will be the better for it! You will be able to look back at some point and say yes, I did make a difference.


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