In New York City, Monday December 28 was Good Riddance Day in Times Square. Organizers encouraged people to write their grievances down and then throw the lists into shredders symbolizing the act of letting go of painful memories, bad experiences, foolish mistakes, bad relationships, dumb choices, and long-held grudges that had been loading up their insides. Participants could use a sledgehammer in case the shredder didn’t provide enough emotional release.
Actually, 2009, was a rather good year for me even in the mist of the financial downfall and a slow market. To be alive, to have friends, have a house to live in, and fairly good health has been a blessing for me.
My life has been a good journey and as my readers know I have been blessed to have been many places around the world. One thing I know for sure is that life is more than what you make it. It is more often what God does for us that make things better to live with.
As I grow older I am often drawn back in my memory to my youth and to recall the “good ole days.” However, I can’t pick out one era that was better for my wife and me before or during our 51 years of being together. I know of nothing I would change other than wishing we could be closer to our sons and their families, but each has his own family and are making life better for them.
During the year I was able to visit some of my old classmates which brought a pleasant enjoyment to me. While visiting the Wyndham Resort on Greer’s Ferry Lake, my wife and I were able to visit classmates I had not seen in 55 years. What a great visit we had with them. Another came when we were traveling to the resort, I remembered that the person who sat beside me during our 4 years in High School lived in Batesville. Having stopped at Wendy’s I called and reached them. Within minutes they were with us and the visit was wonderful. Unbeknown to me was that our friend was a dear friend of Dr. Charles Rorex, one of our city’s former leaders. They had been classmates at Arkansas State University and had remained close friends since. Shortly after our departure they called Dr. Rorex who afterwards called me at the resort and recommended we meet when we returned to Farmington. So this year I have added a new friend as well.
By now I was living in the past reliving my old class days. I had a high school class of those who accomplished much in life. I cannot begin to relate the many things each has accomplished over the years. Three have been ministers for over 54 years, one a city mayor, numerous college professors, school teachers, medical doctors, salesmen, farmers, successful businessmen, a NASA researcher, Airline pilot, printers, Fire chief, insurance providers, lawyers, store owners, a boxing promoter, along with a number of widows and widowers. We have some of the most beautiful woman and handsome men still in the class of 1955. To say with great compliment I was a part of a classy group of 72 year olds.
Some have died since our last meeting five years ago. It will never be the same again and will change faster as we get farther into the journey.
My travels about the world have slowed and I can only remember the beauty or uniqueness of the places, but our journey in life is more rapid than before. This year I was able to write “Come Travel With Me,” which is filled with 117 places I have been. That was published in February. “And Who Will Follow” was published in September. Both have been received well and are available from www.amazon.com and other retailers. Already, I have begun three other books hoping to finish them during 2010.
I am grateful for the promises in the scriptures that reveal God’s concern for all of mankind. While these verses apply to another in the Bible, they are truths for us as well.
My life has been a good one and I would not want to say good riddance to much of my past.
Maybe we should make 2010 a Year of Good Riddance in which we say farewell to anger, bitterness, blaming, finger pointing, self-justification and a critical spirit, and ask God to grant us a fresh infusion of his grace in all of our relationships.
“And the angel of the Lord came again the second time, and touched him, and said, Arise and eat; because the journey is too great for thee”. - 1 Kings 19:7
“And he said, Let us take our journey, and let us go, and I will go before thee.” - Genesis 33:12