August 2, 2011
I read an article about Mark Shea in the Red Deer Advocate today. Mark had stayed in a homeless centre one night in December 2001. What happened that night changed Mark’s life forever, and he never stayed in another homeless centre again.
Ralph Klein, who was the premier at that time, visited the homeless centre. He called the people who were staying there that night all bums. Mark was offended. Yet, Mark took the derogatory comments as a challenge. He wanted to show that not all homeless people are bums.
Mark traveled across Canada after that night, working at odd jobs. He even went back to school to upgrade his high school education. Now Mark has what he has always wanted: a family. He lives with his girlfriend and their two-year old daughter. And he has a fulltime, permanent job with benefits.
What interested me most about that article were the following words spoken by Mark in the interview: “You can do anything you want as long as you try to do it.”
I couldn’t have said that any better myself.
As long as we are willing to try, we can do it. Maybe we won’t make it the first time. Maybe we won’t make it the second time. Maybe it will take three, five, seven, eleven tries. But if we keep trying, we can achieve our goals. We can reach our dreams.
Often, we stop just short of reaching our dreams. Life becomes just a bit too hard. So we quit. And, often, if we had kept going, we would have broken through the difficulties and reached our goal. That’s an interesting fact about dreams and goals: right before we reach our dreams, the journey becomes extremely difficult. That’s usually a sign that we are really close.
As I type this blog, I’m reminded of a poem that was printed in one of my high school yearbooks. The poem was titled, “Don’t Quit.” After all these years, I still remember parts of this poem. I’m reminded of its advice whenever I feel that I just can’t go on any further.
I looked this poem up on the Internet. I wanted to find out who wrote the poem, and I wanted to read the poem again. I found not just the poem itself. I also found a beautiful You Tube with a narrator reading the poem! It is beautiful and I invite everyone to enjoy this piece of artwork put together by Patty McCullough. The author of the original poem is unknown.
If you want to read the article about Mark Shea in the Red Deer Advocate, go to:http://www.reddeeradvocate.com/news/provincial/Man_reflects_decade_after_encounter_with_Klein_at_homeless_shelter__126557288.html