Pay-it-Forward quote.

Never Stop Shining

Life is full of clouds.

I try to shine on those around me, but clouds sometimes block my view of them. My friendship and love, my life-light doesn't get through to them.

A friend or family member experiences the death of a loved one; my child was bullied at school; an internet friend had a car accident; a co-worker was sick; an acquaintance lost a home in the bad economy; or a friend lost a job.

Clouds surround them. They don't see my rays of hope for their healing, my love and my concern for their pain. Maybe they just don't want them. They block me with clouds of despair. My loving and caring heart can't break through.

They want to be alone.

I've lost jobs. Friends called or emailed me to say, "I'm sorry. Be strong!"

I said, "I will. Thanks for calling." At the time, I couldn't care less, because I was in pain. I didn't want to talk. I sheltered myself with my own clouds.

When my first wife Georgia died, I was in deep pain. I surrounded myself with dark clouds of grief. There were friends who tried to shine on me, but I blocked them with my clouds. They shook my hand or hugged me, I felt nothing, because when they asked, "How are you doing?" and I responded, "Not so well." They backed away, blocked by their clouds. They were afraid to shine on me, afraid to hear the truth.

There were real stars too. They were the people who kept shining. They hugged me, consoled me and were not afraid to hear the ugly truth. They didn't weaken when I cried, but kept shining brighter until they broke through. They were my saviors. They were the lights who wouldn't give up. They shined until my clouds broke and they warmed my heart.

I never give up on a person going through a tough time. They reject me for a bit, but if I keep shining, I get through and they are grateful.

Just the other day, as I drove to work, I saw the most amazing sunrise. There were beautiful clouds in the sky and smoke from multiple wild fires blocking the sky, but this beautiful sun - our sun - God's sun - fought its way through. It never gave up. It never does, because it keeps shining until it has a chance to reach me.

I do the same.  I never stop shining.

~ Michael T. Smith ~
Copyright © 2012

Michael lives in Ohio with his wife Ginny and his stepdaughter's family. You can see a list of Mike's stories here: And you can get his stories emailed to you by signing up here:  Let Michael know what you think of his story:  Michael T. Smith
[ by: Michael T. Smith Copyright © 2012, ( ) - {used with permission} ]

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