Copyright © Louis Schmier and Atwood Publishing.

Date: Wed 7/16/2003 5:35 AM
Random Thought: A Resounding Message

Friday morning I opened the front door and stepped out to get the mail. All the snail mail span was cooked to a crisp in this heat. It's so hot down here in South Georgia Susan had to turn on the oven to cool the house down.

Anyway, among the useless pieces of mail was an innocuous envelope. The address was hand-written. I casually and unexpectantly opened it up. As I read the first couple of lines, my heart suddenly started pounding through my chest. I folded it up. I went out to the fishpond, sat on the swing, and listened to the soothing sound of the waterfalls. After a few minutes, I slowly unfolded the letter and finished reading it. To say that I was profoundly touched might appraoch describing the feeling that enveloped me as I carefully read each word.

I would love to let you to read the letter. It says so much about the deep impact each of us can have, but I cannot. Only my Susan's loving eyes have seen it. So, I'm going to have to be a tad cryptical and "merely" say this:

I don't care if you're an adviser, a classroom teacher, a secretary, an administrator, or a staff person. Be mindful! Be attentive. Be alert. Be careful. You never know. You never know what you think won't matter just might. You never know what you do in passing will forever remain to stir someone's soul. You never know when you might innoculate someone with a dream. You never know when you might arouse someone's faith. You never know when a small word will open the doorway to a new path . You never know when a slight gesture will open the window and let in some fresh air. You never know when a small touch will raise the shade and let some light enter. You never know what a little bit of sincere love will open someone's heart let some grace reach in. I'll say it again. Be aware. Be sensitive. You never know what you think you say or do does not matter just might.

For me, this student's letter says that each and every student comes bearing a short but resounding joyous message of hope. And this is the message: Don't be discouraged. Don't give up. You can surely alter the future!

And, when you heed that message and carry that belief with you, it becomes a part of all you see, listen to, think, feel, and do. And, when you carry the faith that your teaching or advising or administering or whatever you do is filled with possibilty, opportunity, meaning, and purpose, then you will know how vital, precious, enriching, and abundantly wonderful it is to be an educator.

         Make it a good day.


         Louis Schmier      
         Department of History
         Valdosta State University
         Valdosta, GA  31698                 /~\        /\ /\
         912-333-5947              /^\      /     \    /  /~\  \   /~\__/\
                                 /     \__/         \/  /  /\ /~\/         \
                          /\/\-/ /^\_____\____________/__/_______/^\
                        -_~    /  "If you want to climb mountains,   \ /^\
                         _ _ /      don't practice on mole hills" -    \____

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