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Common Courtesy

I was walking out of a bank lobby this past Saturday when I passed by an elderly woman who was stopped in the walkway of the lobby entrance wiping her feet on a door mat. To prevent drawing attention to myself I didn’t stop walking but I did take a metal note of her. I myself have never stopped to make sure my shoes were clean before entering a public building, however, I should. We should all be more aware of the world around us. It seems that my generation has lost sight of this concept.

The concept of common courtesy was once was so ingrained in our society that any action that flowed against it was considered a high offense, whether public or private. So why have we changed our perspective?

I want to encourage you to work each day at showing care and consideration not only to those people around you, but also the environments that you interact with. If you see trash on the floor stop and pick it up, hold open a door for someone, be courteous and safe in traffic, give space to people in a shopping market, help someone to their car, turn off the lights in an empty room.
Just think what the world would be like if everyone had this outlook.

~John

Nov 16, 2012 - A little about John    4 Comments

Watch Clouds

A dear friend of mine who teaches the 2nd grade wrote me short note :

At our school if you’re a child and you get into some minor trouble you’ll have to sit on a brick wall at recess for a short period of time. I’m unsure if this benefits all children equally or not, however that is what we have put in place. Now the kids, when they find themselves in trouble and doing time on the wall, will sulk and cry, or sometimes grin obliviously at their circumstances and play with their fingers or an occasional small rock. Some fall asleep and some talk to themselves or sing.

Today one of my girls found herself sitting on the wall because she wouldn’t clean up during clean up time. She went and sat down against the brick all without a grudge. I really didn’t even take notice of her until recess was half over. I glanced over and she was looking straight up. As I walked towards her she never flinched from her upward gaze. When I approached her I began to say, “You can get up.” when my mouth just shut and I looked up.

Bright blue sky and one wispy, white cloud. But it got my attention as it had hers. It was so, so beautiful and alive. The white vapor swirled and crisscrossed like smoke flowing from the top of a chimney. It was so peaceful and graceful. I just stood there staring at it flow and dance through the sky. I glanced down for a minute and she was standing by me, still looking up, not saying a word. We both just watched this single cloud performing it’s little show above our playground. The cloud shrank with every turn and twist until finally it just disappeared. It was truly amazing.

I looked down and all the kids who were in trouble sitting on the wall, were now standing around me looking up. We all just smiled at each other. This boy from another class said, “Do that again!” Man I wish I could. No more clouds in the sky, the cloud show was over. I wish it wasn’t. Someone blew the whistle and all the children lined up. The little girl grabbed my hand, as she does sometimes. We walked to the line and I told her, “Thank you.” She said, “You’re welcome.” like she knew what she was doing. Maybe she does.

I wrote myself a note on my hand: Watch clouds.

I don’t know if you’re waiting for something “big” to happen in your life, but when you take time to enjoy all the little things in life, something “big” happens all the time. Really!

I hope you have a big day, a big weekend, and a even bigger life.

~John

Oct 5, 2012 - A little about John    No Comments

We’re here to help

If there’s no great glorious end to life, if nothing we do matters, then all that matters is what we do. Because that’s all there is. What we do, now, today, in this moment. We have to live and enjoy every moment.

All we should want to do is help. People shouldn’t suffer as they do. If there’s no bigger meaning, then the smallest act of kindness is the greatest thing in the world.

~John

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