Retirement Guys: Crissey Elementary students help our troopsWritten by Nolan Baker Mark Clair | | firstname.lastname@example.org
A couple of weeks ago, we wrote a column about our community give back campaign, part of which is adopting a troop. Letters are written, goodies such as games, books, magazines, etc., are collected and sent to a troop overseas in an effort to give them some diversion from the daunting task of serving our country and keeping all of us safe.
The fifth-graders of Crissey Elementary School in Springfield Local Schools and their teacher Anjanette Newcombe responded by writing letters and collecting items to be sent to our adopted troop. Dana Nehren from our office has coordinated the entire effort and she, myself (Mark) and my partner Nolan Baker, had the opportunity to go to the school to meet these young children who, to me, are examples of goodness and character demonstrated by their efforts. I was touched by meeting these young people and had the opportunity to congratulate them on what a great thing they were doing. I told them that they should be proud that they are helping those that are doing a job that not many of us want to do — keeping our country safe. I also encouraged them to continue to do good things and to continue to help others.
You can see in the picture of this group the beautiful faces of children who have great potential, and will grow up to do great things. It is beyond imagination that children just like these were massacred in the horrific tragedy at Newtown Elementary in Connecticut. These children and their teachers at Newtown and the children at Crissey are examples of good that is in the world. Yet the kids at Newtown were murdered by what is an example of the evil that exists in human hearts.
This is just one man’s opinion, but that is where I believe the struggle between good and evil lies — in our hearts. We all have the potential for good and to do great things. Yet, we all have the potential for bad as well. We have all made mistakes and have made bad decisions. Think about your own situation. All of us have regrets and have made decisions or done things that we wish we could take back. All of us are dealing with something. All of us have been damaged by life. Whether it is our own bad decisions or the bad decisions of others.
The good news is there is hope. These Crissey fifth-graders are a prime example. The previous column about adopting a troop talked about freedom. The freedom to live the way we choose. We also have the freedom to make choices. We know there are consequences to bad choices, yet our humanness causes us to continue to make them. How can we overcome this? I believe it has to be with the help of each other and staying connected to what is good. When we choose to do good things like the Crissey fifth-graders, we are making a difference and are more likely to feel good about ourselves and stay in a positive mind-frame. Yet, it is hard to do this alone. We need the support and direction of others.
Congratulations to teacher Anjanette Newcombe and principal Steve Lee for steering their students in a positive direction. Their students are bearing the fruit of positive influence and wise instruction. As these kids continue to do good things they will continue to be productive citizens.
John 15:5 says, “I am the vine; you are the branches. If you remain in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing.” It is vital to stay connected to the life source. To remain in what can bring the good out of all of us. If we are cut off, we are left to our own devices to wither away and die as a result of bad choices.
Helping the troops may be a small act of kindness, yet it is a huge act of character. A big thanks to Crissey Elementary for being a huge inspiration to all of us at The Retirement Guys. Let’s all continue to support each other and stay connected to the life source. Good and great things will be the result.
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