Thursday, July 31, 2008

Fringe Benefits

I began my fundraising campaign to obviously raise money to fund my trip to China and I am very pleased with how that is going. However along the way I have received many other unexpected blessings. It really has been amazing the amount of people I have come in contact with again. Some friends that I've lost touch with for between 10 and 25 years have suddenly turned back up in my life. With some of these friendships it seems we haven't missed a beat regardless of the amount of time that has passed. I've had the most enjoyable conversations and busted a gut laughing over some of the silly stories that I've had a chance to reminisce about. Reflecting back to my childhood years and young adult life has made me realize how blessed I have been.

Another benefit outside of all the money raised is the outpouring of love, generosity and acts of kindness that I have witnessed over the last several months. It really is heartwarming to have received so much encouragement and support not only from family and friends but from complete strangers. My faith in the human spirit has been rejuvenated! This world we live in can appear pretty ugly sometimes. The news is filled with stories of death, war, crime and an endless myriad of evil acts and events. If one were to interpret life based on the news our existence would seem very depressing.

Fortunately most of us don’t view life based on what we've seen reported in the news. Happiness and joy are all around us, we just have to learn how to recognize it and even more vital, how to display it. My experiences relating to my cause thus far have been very uplifting and inspirational. For this I owe thanks to everyone who has touched my life with such kindness and generosity. More importantly than all, I give thanks and praise to God!

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