I recently sang at the funeral of a dear friend’s father. His name was Jack, and as the minister told the story of his life, thoughts flooded my mind of the man I knew. A man full of passion and zeal who lived every day like it was his last.
Jack was a no-nonsense kind of guy. He was a mechanical genius dedicated to the sport of racing who was talented enough to lead Richard Petty’s pit crew. He took life by the reins, and did things his own way. At his core, he was a dreamer and a risk taker. He knew who he was and what he stood for. Talking with him always made me smile because he made me feel anything was possible.
I knew Jack for 30 years. He was a devoted father and friend, who would do anything for those he loved. Most of all, Jack was a teacher, and never hesitated to pass on a life lesson that could benefit someone on their journey. As I listened to the stories of his life, my admiration grew. Here are some lessons we learned from Jack:
1.) Follow your heart, know who you are, and listen to your inner voice.
2.) Be loyal to those you love. Support them unconditionally.
3.) Be tough. No excuses or complaining. There is always a way to accomplish your goal.
4.) Have fun. Life is meant to be enjoyed, not endured!
Jack grew up during the depression when being tough was a necessity. From a young age, he was determined to make a good life for himself and his family. He was married 42 years and raised three fine children. After 20 years in a secure job, Jack decided it was time give wings to his dreams. He had a burning entrepreneurial spirit, so he quit his job and started his own printing company. Shortly afterwards, his son came to work by his side, then his nephew, then a slew of others. Jack loved his work and built a thriving business. He taught many his trade but, more importantly, he instilled “the book of Jack” in their hearts; lessons to make them better and stronger people.
Jack was devastated to lose his son earlier than his own passing, but his impact lives on in his 2 daughters, granddaughter, the lives he touched, and the lessons he taught us. Like Jack, we all have our book write a pass on to others. What is yours? How do you want to be remembered in your work? In life? Are you passing on what you know? Mostly, are you willing to follow your heart, take risks and put wings on your dreams? Always remember, your book is worth writing and telling.
How can you insure that each day is a powerful chapter in your book?
Credit // Author: Elaine Penn