What Will They Say About You?

“It will be as if she never existed…” Tom Hagen to Senator Geary in The Godfather 2

I thought about this line from the movie this morning as I drove past an empty lot on my way to work. You see it didn’t used to be just a lot; at one time there was a house with one of the nicest little old ladies I’ve ever known living there.

Her house was about a block away from my shoe store and she started to stop in and look at shoes before going to do her weekly  grocery shopping. I looked forward to seeing her each week, as I said she was about one of the sweetest ladies I’ve ever known.

Driving by where her house used to be made me think about Helen and the kitten my family and I gave her once. She loved that little kitty and once a month without fail she would bring in new pictures of it to show me and my wife. It was as if that cat was her baby and she treated her as such.

I’m not sure what happened to Helen, I left the shoe store and got another job and never saw her after that. I’d heard she moved into an assisted living residence, and wondered at that time what had happened to her cat. 

But it wasn’t until I drove by where her home was and saw the empty lot I began to think about the impact we have on others. My family and I impacted her life by giving her a cat, and she in turned changed our lives by becoming our friend.

I miss Helen and those silly cat pictures. And as I’ve gotten older, I’ve come to realize how important relationships really are. I think back over my fifty some years on this planet and wish now I would have invested more time in the lives of those I’ve met instead of being so focused on making a life for me and my family.

As you go about your life, remember to take time and make solid relationships with those you meet. They will pay greater rewards than any money or power you can ever gain.

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Mabookies On Parade

The picture may not be the best quality picture; after all I used my Redneck photo copier to take it, i.e. I took a picture of a picture using my phone, but it is one of my favorite memories from a time long ago. The three people pictured in this photo are me and my friends Terry and Angel, and was taken 16 years ago while on a mission trip in the Philippines. I added the words “Mabookies On Parade” and had it printed for the three or us. We often referred to it as our “album cover” even though we never recorded any music.

The term “mabookie” came from the remastered version of A New Hope (Star Wars episode 4 which is the first movie, but the fourth in the franchise). In it, Jabba the Hutt referred to Han Solo as mabookie and the subtitles defined the term as “my boy”. Terry and I adopted this phrase and began calling each other by this nickname and it took on a life of it’s own. Later we added Angel to the group; even though she’s a girl she was our mabookie too.

One of the reasons I love this picture is because it reminds me of all the laughs we had together. I know you can’t tell from the picture, after all we were making an album cover at the time and were going for the serious artist pose. But when the three of us got together, there was laughter galore.

It probably helped that we were kindred spirits and had the same quirky sense of humor. There have been very few people on this planet who “get me” but these two did and my life is so much better because of them. I believe if every person on this planet had two friends like these the world would be a better place. I’m truly blessed to have been a part of this cadre of fun loving people.

Terry died a few months ago, taking our trio down to a duo, and while it’s been hard with him gone, Angel and I had the opportunity the other night to get together and watch our favorite movie So I Married An Axe Murderer together. It was so nice to have her there with my family; eating, laughing and enjoying each other’s company. It was just like old times and I hadn’t realized how much I missed the good times we all had together.

And as I sit here writing this and looking at this picture I can’t help but thank God He brought these two people into my life so many years ago. They truly have helped to make me a better man, and the laughter they brought into my life I wouldn’t trade for anything in the world. Thank you Terry and Angel for all you’ve done for me; mabookies for eternity.

 Yes, There Are Giants Among Us

“Don’t put off until tomorrow what you can do today.”  ~ Benjamin Franklin

“Don’t let tomorrow arrive without saying the things which need to be said today.”    ~ David W. Felts

Life truly is a fleeting vapor and passes way more quickly than we ever want to admit. Add to this passage of time the death of a close friend and your world will begin to spin even faster than you can imagine. I got a call from my bride while I was at work, which is not unusual so I answered my phone figuring it was to ask me if I’d be working late, or to tell me she was going to visit a friend or something. I had no idea her call would alter the course of my day in such a drastic way. Saying hello, in a shaky voice she informed me of the death of my best friend, Terry Scott.

Where do I even begin? Terry and I have been friends for many years now, more than friends actually, we are brothers. We share a love of coffee, online comics, TV shows and movies. He was my go to guy when life was stressing me out or when I just needed to hear a friendly voice. He was the kind of guy who always knew what to say when you needed to hear it the most. I’ve said it often, but it bears repeating; when I needed to vent frustrations, he would sit there patiently sipping his coffee letting me say the most ridiculous things, hoping I would come to the conclusion of how to handle my situation. But if I didn’t, he would say, “What are you going to do about it?” With a dumb look on my face I’m sure, he would then counsel me on the best course of action. And I would do the same for him, those times having coffee were some of the best times for both of us.

As I’ve spent the past days contemplating the loss of my friend and the impact he had on this planet, what I have lost is just now dawning on me. The title of my post is “Yes, There Are Giants Among Us” and this man was truly a giant among men. His heart for people inspires me to be more like him. To love like Terry is now something I want to strive to emulate even more, not because I want to be great, but because there will be a void in my life and that of countless others which needs to be filled, and if not me, then who? 

The things Terry accomplished in his short time on the planet are amazing. I read a post from his wife this morning which said “Terry Scott” was trending on the internet and this is awesome, not just because he would’ve loved it, but because more people are now seeing the impact his life made and perhaps they will work to be more like him too. He was always about getting more people in God’s kingdom and doing what they were called by God to do.

I miss my friend deeply, he can never be replaced and the void in my life will be felt immensely for the remaining years I’m alive. But my hope rests in Christ and the knowledge I will see him again one day. There is a scene at the end of the movie Gladiator which sums up what I’m saying. Gladiator clip. I will see Terry again and we will sit drinking coffee having many long conversations for all eternity. Mabookies for eternity.