Every year as Thanksgiving Day rolls around I spend quite a bit of time in reflection. And I mostly think about the people I have known throughout the years. In real estate they say the three most important things are location, location, location. In life I think the three most important things are relationships, relationships, relationships.
I have known some wonderful people in my time. Many of them are dead and gone now. But they still exert a powerful influence on my life. I could name names, but that might get me in trouble.
Many of the men I have admired most were men of the country church I attended as a boy. One in particular use to repeat this line each time he prayed: “And Lord, I would not fail to thank you for that day down in the old cow lot when you spoke peace to my troubled soul.” Now, those words will stick with you!
Most of them were men who lived quiet lives, taking the good and bad as it came without boasting or complaining. They loved their families and their God,and left the world in better shape than they found it. I think of them often, and just as often, I offer a prayer of thanks that I had the privilege of knowing them.
And, at this time of year, I think often of my most influential teachers, especially the ones who challenged me. I am grateful for their guidance and influence.
And along the way, I, like many of my readers, have had some wonderful mentors. “Mentor,” as defined by Webster is “a wise adviser; a trusted teacher and counselor.” It seems at different junctures in my life the right person has shown up at exactly the right time to help me along the way. Their showing up has always had a sense of mystery about it – not easily explained, but deeply appreciated. I am thankful for my mentors. Each will receive a call from me this week.
I will spend some time this week thinking of my late father and my late mother. I am one of those fortunate sons who can say my father was the best man I have ever known. My father lived, what you might call, an un-hurried life. One of his brothers affectionately nicknamed him “Lightning.” My father loved the land. He was as solid as a rock. I miss his bashful smile.
My mother, on the other hand, was one of the most intelligent persons I have ever known. And she was as tough as nails. (Until her grandchildren came along. She had a memory like a steel trap. I wish you could have known her. She’s been gone these five years. I think of a question I need to ask her almost every day.
I declare. I think my parent’s lives have had a greater influence on me since they’ve been gone that when they were still here – just another one of life’s strange twists.
You can bet I will stop and give thanks for them, and many precious memories this week.
And friends. What would we do, and where would we be without our friends? As my friend and business motivational speaker Jim Rohn says, “If I were wrongly accused and stuck in a Mexican jail, I have a few friends who would come and get me. It wouldn’t matter the day or hour. They would come. They would spend any amount of money and do whatever it took to get me out.” Now that’s a friend. I have a few friends like that. If you do, be thankful.
Speaking of friends, “There is a friend that sticketh closer than a brother.” If you have such a friend, “Be thankful unto Him and bless His name.”
Happy Thanksgiving to you and yours!
Copyright by Jack McCall 2016