Tag Archives: family

A Letter to my Son…Who’s Not Working (Part 5 of 5)

Letter 5 of 5

This is a five-part series of letters from a loving parent to a son. The letters demonstrate how parents can love and support their children during transitional periods. As young adults build their own identity and search for employment, a parent’s kind words can assist them in their journey.
Read the first letter here.

Dear Son,

We’re hoping this sounds like a great plan for you – getting a job of your choice. I am not so concerned about what it is, but I do hope it is something that you want to do. When we apply ourselves to something we like, our lives continue month after month and year after year, building a track record or positivity and success.  That’s where our sense of self, identity, and esteem comes from.

It’s been a wonderful year having you home. I hope you see how much I have tried to help you with school and other areas.  I thought you might want to read this before we talked.  I am looking forward to hearing about your new independent life and to cheering you on.

With great love and admiration for who you are,

Sincerely,

Your Dad

This is the final letter of this five part series. Read letters one, two, three or four.

 

Why Certain People Are In Your Life

people come into your life post

These words have been inspiring to me, and I am glad to share them with you.

People come into your life for a reason, a season or a lifetime.  When you figure out which it is, you know exactly what to do.

When someone is in your life for a REASON, it is usually to meet a need you have expressed outwardly or inwardly.  They have come to assist you through a difficulty, to provide you with guidance and support, to aid you physically, emotionally or spiritually.  They may seem like a godsend, and they are.  They are there for the reason you need them to be.

Then, without any wrongdoing on your part or at an inconvenient time, this person will say or do something to bring the relationship to an end.  Sometimes they die.  Sometimes they walk away.  Sometimes they act up or out and force you to take a stand.  What we must realize is that our need has been met, our desire fulfilled; their work is done.  The prayer you sent up has been answered and it is now time to move on.

When people come into your life for a SEASON, it is because your turn has come to share, grow or learn.  They may bring you an experience of peace or make you laugh.  They may teach you something you have never done.  They usually give you an unbelievable amount of joy.  Believe it!  It is real!  But, only for a season.

LIFETIME relationships teach you lifetime lessons; those things you must build upon in order to have a solid emotional foundation.  Your job is to accept the lesson, love the person (any way); and put what you have learned to use in all other relationships and areas of your life.  It is said that love is blind, but friendship is clairvoyant.

Author Unknown

The Classic Pamela Positive: Philanthropy at the Drycleaners

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Get inspired by an audio version of this blog!

I’ve shared before about philanthropy as “the love of people,” as a daily practice.

One day I had a pivotal experience that helped me be a better ‘daily philanthropist.’  Each day, I make a ‘to do’ list. The list might range from contacting a corporate client, to running an errand at the drycleaners. Checking off these items certainly gave me a nice sense of satisfaction!

During this day, I found myself particularly busy. I rushed into the drycleaners. I swooped in to pick up my clothes and left a bundle of clothes on the counter.  “There!” I told myself triumphantly. “I fit in the drycleaners before a meeting. I have gotten one more item off my list!” Accomplishment, I thought; and yet I didn’t feel it.

What I realized is that the drycleaners wasn’t an errand.

No, it was not a ‘to-do.’

It was an opportunity to love.

Life is not about lists. We aren’t programmed to just get things done. Instead, each activity, each to-do, each task, is actually an experience of loving. This is especially true because each experience usually means interacting with someone else. And when we do this in a calm, present, joyful way, that’s living. And it’s also the true spirit of philanthropy. Loving and being present with others, with mankind.

As one great thinker wrote, a person “… is a marvel, a miracle in the universe… With selfless love, he inscribes on the heart of humanity and transcribes on the page of reality the living, palpable presence – the might and majesty! – of all goodness. He lives for all mankind.”*

Rushing in and out of the drycleaners, I had missed a valuable opportunity. What I needed to do was connect with my drycleaners, know them by name, greet them warmly, and sincerely ask how they are doing. Now I know how Hao is doing, and we have a great relationship of warmth and kindness.  I look forward to our visits.

Writing a check is only one type of philanthropy. I’ve found that it exists at the drycleaners, and pretty much anywhere we want.  Where does it exist for you?

 

*Mary Baker Eddy

The Classic Pamela Positive: Give A Gift Every Day

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I hope you enjoy a new audio version of this blog!

Give a gift every day.

Send your friend’s birthday gift early.

See a gift that would be meaningful for someone you care about, and just buy it. Give it to them now.

Take the time to cook a meal for your partner or your roommate.  Take the time to cook a meal for yourself.

Smile at a person walking down the street.

Smile at a homeless person and stop and learn their name. There is the gift of knowing someone. Of acknowledging you care.

Be kind to yourself.

Get in bed early.

Say three gratefuls before you fall asleep.

Say three gratefuls when you wake up.

Believe today is special.

Take time at lunch to be grateful for three more things.

Pay the phone bill for your roommate.

Drop off banana bread for your neighbor.

Give a lot. Expect little.

Smile at yourself in the mirror.

Work hard and attain the gift of devotion to something you believe in.

Work and leave early and give yourself a gentle night off, nurturing yourself.

Stop and look at nature. Any part of nature. The expanse of the sky; drifting clouds; a vibrant flower.

Give yourself the gift of awareness of how precious and beautiful life is every day.

The Pamela Positive: Start Your Life Out With Sugar

According to a Persian tradition, wedding guests sprinkle the new bride and groom with sugar.  It means that everyone is wishing them sweetness in life as they start out on their journey together.

Here is more background on beautiful Persian wedding traditions.

Whether we are married, single, have wonderful friends, are in college or retired, may we all “sprinkle sugar” on each other each day.  Let’s encourage that sweetness to reign in our daily lives, every day!

The Pamela Positive: “If It Is Right, It Happens…Nothing Good Gets Away”

Heartfelt advice is such wonderful wealth.   And it’s even more meaningful when it’s in a letter, which someone took the time to write, and shape with their own beautiful language, handwriting and style.

This is one of my favorites, between a father and a son. John Steinbeck wrote to his son about the meaning of love.  I really don’t need to say anything else.

Enjoy this sincere, kind wisdom. I almost feel its warmth emanating from the page…of care, of experience, of hope, of trust.  May we all trust love.

“Love…is an outpouring of everything good in you–of kindness, and consideration and respect–not only the social respect of manners but the greater respect which is recognition of another person as unique and valuable…[This] can release in you strength, and courage and goodness and even wisdom you didn’t know you had…And don’t worry about losing.  If it is right, it happens–the main this is not to hurry.  Nothing good gets away.”  — John Steinbeck, to his son Thom

John Steinbeck was a Nobel Prize-winning author, whose most famous works include The Grapes of Wrath, East of Eden, and Of Mice and Men.  Steinbeck’s works often address social issues such as ecology, cultural standards and the condition of laborers.

“Not as an emblem of suffering…but as an example of faithfulness” -Mennonite Phrase

“Not as an emblem of suffering, but as an example of faithfulness in the midst of suffering. Job never doubted God.”

-Mennonite Phrase

We are faithful in anything in life — our work, our family, our duties, not simply to do it.  We do it because we cherish the values they represent, or, it supports the people we love.

We go to work because we are impassioned by it and how we can make the world better, whether you are an international diplomat or a garbage man who helps keep our streets and health safe.   We are faithful to cherish others, such as showing up for our grandson’s game or niece’s game, because we love them and want to nurture that love.    Most importantly, we have faith in God because we trust that He/She has the best plan for us.  So if we love our work and love our families, shouldn’t we love an all Powerful God the most?

 

The Mennonites are a group of Christian Anabaptists named after Menno Simons (1496–1561). His teachings were a relatively minor influence on the group, though. They are of the historic peace churches. Mennonites are committed to nonviolence, nonviolent resistance/reconciliation, and pacifism.  There are about 1.5 million Mennonites worldwide as of 2006. There are many different types of mennonite communities in the world. There are those that dress in old-fashioned ways, and others which are hard to tell apart from other people leading a modern lifestyle. Most Mennonites are in the United States and Democratic Republic of Congo, but Mennonites can also be found in tight-knit communities in at least 51 countries on six continents or scattered amongst the populace of those countries.

Mennonites have an international distinction among Christian denominations in disaster relief. They also place a strong theological emphasis on voluntary service. Mennonite Disaster Service, based in North America, provides both immediate and long-term responses to hurricanes, floods, and other disasters. Mennonite Central Committee provides disaster relief around the world alongside their long-term international development programs. Other programs offer a variety of relief efforts and services throughout the world.  In the last few decades some Mennonite groups have also become more actively involved with peace and social justice issues, helping to found Christian Peacemaker Teams and Mennonite Conciliation Service.