VALUE STORIES
What value defines you?

We all try to live by many different values, but usually one of them stands out a little more than the others... Is your value love? grit? giving back? What value defines you?

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REACHING OUT
GENUINE RED RYDER 200 SHOT CARBINE ACTION AIR RIFLE One of my all time favorite movies is "A Christmas Story" which follows the plight Ralphie Parker who is a nine year old boy from Indiana. The main point of this story is Raphie's desire for a "Genuine Red Ryder 200 Shot Carbine Action Air Rifle" for Christmas. Throughout the movie, all the indicators are that it...
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GENEROSITY
A BIRTHDAY TO REMEMBER I work with developmentally disabled adults in a residential setting. One of the men wanted to go to a restaurant for his birthday with a few of his friends and housemates. We were all having a great time, eating and joking and just having fun. When I went to pay the bill (which was about $300) the wait staff...
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FORGIVENESS
TEARING UP THE IOU I am a wife and mother of three grown sons, and have been married to a great guy for almost 27 years. We've been in ministry together all these years, sharing the pain and ultimate healing of so many. But along that journey, I admit that I've encountered a few battle scars of my own. Several years ago, a very...
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EDUCATION
NEVER SAY NEVER The year was 1970, and I was a sophomore at UMKC studying my favorite subject, history. My friend and I would sit in the dorm until the wee hours of the morning, talking about the unorthodox delivery of Dr. D, our English Literature instructor. His lectures were wild and wonderful. His gyrations and ad lib...
SUBMITTED BY J. PATTERSON
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FORGIVENESS
TRUE FORGIVENESS I guess I can hold a grudge for 30 years or more! It was the 70's and when I was 5 my parents divorced. My mom had a good reason to divorce my dad and I knew all about it, even though I was really too young to handle this information. Suddenly this stay at home mom was a single parent of five kids. Of course...
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RISING ABOVE
BECOMMING WHOLE AGAIN We all have our own story filled with chapters about people and events unique to us and I will never forget where my life story took a sudden change of course and brought about my most life altering events with people I'll never forget. I had a routine operation on my knee go wrong and developed a life...
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BELIEVE IN YOURSELF
FROM SPARK TO FLAME When my now 19 year old daughter was in Grade 3, all of Mrs. Mathews' students were given a small pot with a bean seed to plant. Green string beans it seems are pretty hardy and the perfect seed to use when promoting green thumbs in young children. That same plant was also a most unexpected source of...
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CONFIDENCE
HAVING FAITH IN YOURSELF "If you do what you've always done, you'll get what you've always gotten." This quote has always seemed to describe me perfectly. All throughout my high school career I have always been the person to play it safe. I would sometimes venture out of my comfort zone by trying something new, but would easily become...
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LISTENING
FLICKERS OF HOPE The past year has been what I can only describe as horrible. I was the victim of a crime and so many emotions erupted inside me I didn't know who I was any more. To make matters worse it had happened on Valentines Day. I can remember thinking to myself, "the one day of the year where people go out of their way to...
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FRIENDSHIP
WHAT Snowflakes, chills, blustery winds, snow melts, water puddles, and muddy snow shoes, these are the sights that welcomed me back in Orland Park. I just came back from a flight from a tropical island in Asia. I try to paint a smile on my cold, blushing cheeks. Winters are not my cup of tea—I dislike them down to...
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FORGIVENESS
A GIFT TO ALL - BUT THE GIFT WAS IN THE GIVING In 1994, the year after my father-in-law died, I planned a surprise for my husband on our anniversary. I wrote all of his east coast relatives and asked if we could celebrate the Orthodox Christmas together. The older generation of my husband's family were raised Serbian Orthodox, and we'd chosen that date for...
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RESPECT
FUNERAL PROCESSION My grandmother taught me several things before she passed away and many of them have stayed with me to this day. One of the things that she taught me was that when a funeral procession is going by, that you should pull over to the side of the road and let the grieving pass. As I was driving down a road one...
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FRIENDSHIP
A TRUE FRIEND For as long as I can remember, I have had a friend through a friend of my mother's. My mom and her mom met through a downhill skiing group for people with disabilities. I am disabled, and her mother is disabled. We lived about 45 minutes away from each other so we didn't really grow up together, but we...
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COMMON GROUND
GUESTS FROM THE CLUB As a youngster growing up in the big city of Vancouver with my parents, three brothers and a sister, there was always plenty of food on the table. This was no small feat, however, as Dad was the sole provider for our family of seven. It seemed to us kids that Mom spent every summer and fall canning the vegetables...
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HELPING OTHERS
THE STAMP My story is a very simple one, because of a simple action. While standing in line at the local department store, I was asked by the customer in front of me if that particular store offered postage stamps. I stated that they did offer books of stamps, but the gentleman needed only one stamp, not an entire book of...
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