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SL Life Lessons: Worst Thing, New Beginning

Filed in Inspiration by on 05/22/2016 Comments • views: 1748

Sun Rise2009 would begin the most challenging years of my life. Like millions of other Americans suffering through the “Great Recession”, I was laid off from my job of 13 years, the value of my home would decline precipitously and despite my many efforts it was extremely difficult to find a job in a market devoid of them. I’d experience the added pressure, like many other men and women, of not simply being “a bread winner”, but “the bread winner” of my family.

Nevertheless, in the midst of my tumultuous circumstances, I decided to focus on my passions and do something to help someone else. In an attempt to encourage women and men to get in shape to reduce their risk to chronic illnesses, I began writing an article that I’d plan to submit to a national health magazine. One page, turned to ten pages, turned to fifty pages. It wasn’t until I was half way through what would become a manuscript that I’d become aware of my calling; to do everything humanly possible to protect God’s greatest creation, the human body. Body Under Construction was born and continues to assist thousands of women and men in getting and staying in shape while reducing their risk to chronic illnesses caused by obesity.

As the rippling effects of the “Great Recession” lingered for years thereafter, I’d find myself experiencing emotional “valleys” as I continued to search for employment. During one of many “valley” moments, I was sitting in my basement wondering how I was going to take care of my family. Suddenly, I thought of my mother. How, as a single mother, she raised my sister, Colette and I. In spite of my mother’s limited finances, she loved and took care of us. Then I’d recall my mother taking us on a trip to do the seemingly impossible; pursue my sister’s dream of meeting her teen idols- Michael Jackson and the Jackson 5. Despite having little money and no address for the world famous group, we’d board a Greyhound bus and take a 3-day journey across the country. After searching for approximately a month, and staying at a shelter for a week as a result of running out of money, we’d find the home of the Jacksons. Our 2-day visit with the world famous family would be one we’d never forget. As I recalled what my mother was able to accomplish despite the obstacles, I’d become encouraged to never give up and to keep moving forward. I’d then realize that there are millions of other Americans who were in the midst of their own “valleys”. They, like me, needed to be encouraged and inspired. They needed hope and to believe again. Though I hadn’t plan to do so, I’d write a second book, Journey to the Jacksons, that has inspired many to believe in the impossible and never give up hope. Just as Body Under Construction would heal the human body, Journey to the Jacksons would heal the soul and human spirit.

The trials we face can often lead to new beginnings. I’d never plan to write a book, let alone two. Yet, these books have been instrumental in encouraging and inspiring others.

Maybe you’ve fallen on difficult times. Loss of a job, home, relationship. I know these times can be tough. When we experience difficulties in life, they often lead to something beyond our wildest dreams. As Gugu Mbatha-Raw so eloquently stated “…sometimes the worst thing can turn out to be a new beginning…”


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