2016 is upon us. This is the time of year when we remember and treasure the amazing people and events in our lives.
In 1937, when I was 7 years of age, our family decided to build a new dairy barn. Construction began early in the year. I remember being utterly amazed at the strength of the team of horses that pulled the dump scraper to dig out the underground setting. What a tremendous show of strength.
The carpenters worked daily. Finally, on a brilliant Saturday morning, neighboring folks from all around came to help with the barn raising. Post and beam construction had been laid out by the carpenters beforehand. And then, with strong ropes fastened to the posts and beams, the neighbors began the awesome task of lifting the mighty structural sections into place. By the end of the day, the framework was solidly erected and affixed. To this day, that sight of strength and ingenuity remains ensconced in my memory bank.
Also amazing was the time when I was 9 and our family went to see Niagara Falls. It was my first time there. I was utterly amazed at the sight of such a gargantuan flow of water cascading into the mighty Niagara Gorge. What a spectacular sight to behold.
I have often been amazed in my 86 years. I never cease to be amazed that after a long, cold, snow-blustering winter, the spring vegetation bursts forth in abundance with brilliant colors and green foliage.
It is amazing, too, to hear a young child for the first time read words from the printed page and declare, “I am reading! Did you hear me?” It is also amazing to hear our young grandchildren play a tune on their musical instruments for the first time or to make their first patchwork sewing project with needle and thread. It was amazing, too, to see our grandchildren score their first home run or touchdown in an athletic event or to see our granddaughters participate in an equestrian horseback riding event.
I am still utterly amazed at the musical talent possessed by my wife. She can hear a piece of music only once or twice – classical or otherwise – and then by ear flawlessly perform the piece on piano or organ. She also can transpose the selection into whatever key one might desire, all by ear. Now that is a gift. Truly, a key to achievement is self-confidence, which includes preparation, concentration and trust.
In short, each person can develop the kind of “self” one desires to be by fanning the tiny, inner sparks of possibility into flames of accomplishment. With confidence and faith, one can open the doors to one’s potential. To be sure, one’s inner motivation is a gift to be treasured.
As I see it, true accomplishment is stirred by the flame of self-confidence that shines from the inside out. People are like stained-glass windows. They sparkle and shine when the sun is out, but when the darkness sets in, their true beauty is revealed by the light from within their heart.
Confidence comes from being “you” and not trying to be someone you are not. By being oneself and by cherishing the things of which you are capable, you are illuminating the flame of potentiality within yourself. The light of possibility from within burns brightest when one does that which speaks from the treasury of one’s heart. Amazing? You bet it is!