A lesson for teachers – and all of us…

Hi – I got this email from a friend of mine today… It meant a lot to me and I’m thinking that maybe it’d mean something to you too…

I’m not sure if the story is true, but either way – it has meaning… Many people do care about you just as you care about them. Maybe it’s time to let them know…

Here’s the story:

One day a teacher asked her students to list the names of the other students in the room on two sheets of paper, leaving a space between each name.

Then she told them to think of the nicest thing they could say about each of their classmates and write it down.

It took the remainder of the class period to finish their assignment, and as the students left the room, each one handed in the papers.

That Saturday, the teacher wrote down the name of each student on a separate sheet of paper, and listed what everyone else had said about that individual.

On Monday she gave each student his or her list. Before long, the entire class was smiling. ‘Really?’ she heard whispered. ‘I never knew that I meant anything to anyone!’ and, ‘I didn’t know others liked me so much,’ were most of the comments.

No one ever mentioned those papers in class again. She never knew if they discussed them after class or with their parents, but it didn’t matter. The exercise had accomplished its purpose. The students were happy with themselves and one another. That group of students moved on.

Several years later, one of the students was killed in Vietnam and his teacher attended the funeral of that special student. She had never seen a serviceman in a military coffin before. He looked so handsome, so mature.

The church was packed with his friends. One by one those who loved him took a last walk by the coffin. The teacher was the last one to bless the coffin.

As she stood there, one of the soldiers who acted as pallbearer came up to her. ‘Were you Mark’s math teacher?’ he asked. She nodded: ‘yes.’ Then he said: ‘Mark talked about you a lot.’

After the funeral, most of Mark’s former classmates went together to a luncheon. Mark’s mother and father were there, obviously waiting to speak with his teacher.

‘We want to show you something,’ his father said, taking a wallet out of his pocket ‘They found this on Mark when he was killed. We thought you might recognize it.’

Opening the bill fold, he carefully removed two worn pieces of notebook paper that had obviously been taped, folded and refolded many times.. The teacher knew without looking that the papers were the ones on which she had listed all the good things each of Mark’s classmates had said about him.

‘Thank you so much for doing that,’ Mark’s mother said. ‘As you can see, Mark treasured it.’

All of Mark’s former classmates started to gather around. Charlie smiled rather sheepishly and said, ‘I still have my list. It’s in the top drawer of my desk at home.’

Chuck’s wife said, ‘Chuck asked me to put his in our wedding album.’

‘I have mine too,’ Marilyn said. ‘It’s in my diary’

Then Vicki, another classmate, reached into her pocketbook, took out her wallet and showed her worn and frazzled list to the group. ‘I carry this with me at all times,’ Vicki said and without batting an eyelash, she continued: ‘I think we all saved our lists’

That’s when the teacher finally sat down and cried. She cried for Mark and for all his friends who would never see him again.

The density of people in society is so thick that we forget that life will end one day. And we don’t know when that one day will be.

So please, tell the people you love and care for, that they are special and important. Tell them, before it is too late.

And One Way To Accomplish This Is: Forward this message on. If you do not send it, you will have, once again passed up the wonderful opportunity to do something nice and beautiful.

If you’re ‘too busy’ to take those few minutes right now to forward this message on, would this be the VERY first time you didn’t do that little thing that would make a difference in your relationships?

The more people that you send this to, the better you’ll be at reaching out to those you care about.

Remember, you reap what you sow. What you put into the lives of others comes back into your own.

Have a great day – and be gracious and thankful!

Giving Thanks

What You Have To Do… (I have to What?)

OK, your first reaction to the title of this might be, “I don’t have to do anything.”

That’s right, you don’t.

But you can choose to if you want.  And choosing to will be incredibly valuable to you – and someone else – and best, it won’t cost you a dime, unless you are using a payphone of course.

So here’s the plan.

  1. Think back to a time you were going through “life” – a time that felt difficult
  2. Think of a person from that time that said something, did something or made an impact on you or your direction – and changed your life.
  3. Really think about the impact that this one conversation or action had on your life.
  4. Write down all the good things that came out of this, the chain of great things that came as a result.
  5. Contact this person, schedule a lunch with them, send them a card, whatever – but thank them for what they did and tell them why and how your life is better because of it.

It’s really that simple, it only takes a few moments and both you and they will feel great because of it.

Good luck, be grateful and make it a great day.


Giving Thanks

February 9th is now the International Give Thanks Day.

Recognize the Unrecognized

And it’s not a normal give thanks day, but a day where you pick someone special who, in your life or in the last year, has made a difference.

This should be a person who you’ve never recognized or thanked before. It could be a person who simply made a comment that shifted your direction or viewpoint.

It could be a childhood friend that helped you through a tough time. It could be someone who didn’t know they helped you or didn’t plan on helping – the help just happened – and because if it you are better – and you want them to know it.

Be a fan of this page, share with friends and tell people that they’ve made a difference in your life, however big or small the difference, they did it.

John Kirker

P.S.  You can give thanks every day.  You can thank people for doing anything.  Just remember.  It doesn’t cost anything to do it and it’ll make both you and them feel great.

PPS.  Add comments on who you thanked and why.