Thursday, March 1, 2012

Thanks for making a difference

While on my way in to work today I was listening to a radio station that gives out a website of the day. Today’s website was about mentoring teens. I haven’t checked it out yet, but the plug for it made me think.

In light of all that has happened in our Northeastern Ohio area (Chardon school shooting), people are finding ways that they can make a difference and help out- to come together as one unit/community to help those in need, hurting, or seeking answers. There is no doubt that the student who chose to do such an act of insensitivity and violence surely needed a mentor or someone to help him with whatever issues he may have had. It’s possible that maybe he simply needed someone to talk with to help him feel at ease with all he is going through. Teen years are hard. Certainly not a time in my life I would want to relive. However, despite this tragedy, people are trying to reach out not only to his family, the victims’ families and the community, but to other teens like him through counseling, support, mentoring, whatever they are able to do.

  The plug for the website shared this sentiment. While it may be a little late for helping this teen make a better choice and those affected, it’s not too late to start to make a difference with others in your area that you can influence. The broadcasters mentioned a book by Denzel Washington, A Hand to Guide Me. In it, short stories about people are told related to people who made a difference in their lives and how it helped them to become they person they are today. They continued by saying that at some point or time in our lives, we all have a mentor to help and guide us. It made me think “Who were my mentors?” Yes, I’ve had more than 1 as I’m sure you have!

At this time, I would like to thank those who helped me become the person I am today.
First and foremost, my mom and grandma. Without them, I don’t know where I would be. They helped me see the importance of family, as well as all the responsibilities that come with being a mom and that it’s truly a joyous job regardless of how much heartache, frustration, and work it may seem as you go through it. They are filled with unconditional love, wisdom and guidance. Let's face it, in a time of need, who do I call? One of them. They are amazing women who have shown me not only that mothering is a lifelong job, but also the heart of a wife. That love is shown in all the menial jobs we may do: scrubbing the toilet, tub and any other surface in the house, the never ending dishes that need constant washing, the love that goes into cooking a meal. Thank you, thank you, thank you!
Next, Pastor Bob Brubaker. Without him, I don’t think I would have grown in Christ as I have. I certainly doubt I would have the faith I do today without him teaching me about how immensely Christ loves us. It’s definitely more than we could ask or imagine. Before meeting Bob, I had given up on church. Stopped going. Stopped everything related to church and religion. I still believed in God, I just didn’t get it. Choosing to go back to church with my every praying and faithful mom let me meet Bob, which lead me to my life today. Bob didn’t really do this, but in showing me that God has a purpose to my life that I can find if I seek it, he brought me to a relationship with God that allowed me to listen and follow what I felt was my calling in life. God did it, not Bob. Bob was the messenger and I’m forever grateful for that.
 His wife, Jan, thank you. You taught me the importance of hospitality and being a gracious hostess. What a gift God has given you!
There are more, but I'm saving some of those for a later post as well. I would go on for a while if I didn't.
Thank you to those of you who have made a difference in someone’s life. It really could mean the difference between a fulfilled life and one of just living. As parents, we all have to remember that we are not only parents to our children, but also role models and mentors. We need to make sure that we do the best we can for our family in order to help each member feel valued, secure, and loved unconditionally. If we all were granted this, imagine what our community/world would be like. Take time to invest in someone- your children, a teen across the street, someone at church. Let them know there are people who care and are willing to help. Hopefully, with such actions, foolishness and folly will fall by the wayside over time.


  1. Well said, as usual, Cheri. Parents have the largest hand in raising their children, but it does take a village...we never know how our actions will impact someone else.

    1. Thanks, Julie! Such responsibility we have as citizens in this big world. Moreso for parents of course, but as you said, it does take a village.