September 28, 2009

What does it look like
To live a genuine life
I would like to know

Before I give my answers
How about you giving thought
What it is to you
I will answer this question
If you will choose to reply
Tell me what you have learned
I would like to hear
© Terry S. Smith
written June 19, 2009


September 25, 2009

In my private world
I make choices to train well
I am what I think
What I do daily
To live a genuine life
Is most important
I will pursue character
Integrity will be first
Maturity is my goal
I will seek to serve
“Become a person who pursues character before success, integrity before popularity, maturity before growth and service to others before accomplishment in your own life.”  Joshua Choonmin Kang

© Terry S. Smith

 written September 1, 2008


your response

September 23, 2009


No one escapes the trouble

We all “get it in the neck”

The big question to be asked

Is: “What do I do?”


Victor Frankl speaks to this

From a concentration camp

Everyone taken from him

During World War II


His family was destroyed

His wife and children killed

He chose not to be bitter

Surrender his mind


Hatred would have destroyed him

A choice he could have made

In searching he found a way

And he was set free 


Man’s Search for Meaning

The book he wrote in Response

Tells the story well


We all have a choice

Each one is responsible

It’s my decision

What I will do with my life

I am larger than my pain


© Terry S. Smith

written September 16, 2009


love yourself

September 20, 2009


I have learned to love myself

The importance of my story

To have insight you must know

All about yourself


That will take understanding

Of your personality

In seeking wisdom I found

A surprising joy


Good information 

From trustworthy resources

Makes a difference


I looked for models

For those who celebrate life

Who don’t live in fear


In searching I found

Good people who love themselves

They’re the best givers


When you love yourself

You can “get over yourself”

See through new glasses


A seed in the ground

When it’s properly cared for 

Bears beautiful fruit

A life that’s cared for 

When it is buried in love

Bears beautiful fruit



© Terry S. Smith

written September 19, 2009



September 18, 2009


When I do my best

Sometimes it is not enough

My humanity fails me

It is the place I learn the most

I have learned to forgive me


Looking back I see

My ignorance saddens me

Remembering those I hurt

With good intentions

I did not know their story

I’ve learned to say, “I’m sorry.”


When I learned a person’s story

My heart overflows

With compassion and respect

For their journey in this life


I have laid down my judgment

And picked up compassion

I learned when I judge myself

I’m judgmental of others 


Seek understanding

A secret few comprehend

Listen first, talk last


© Terry S. Smith

written September, 18, 2009


Life is the greatest gift

September 17, 2009

I am thankful for my life
The people in my world
Are precious and bring great joy
They are my treasure
What I am thankful for
Cannot be taken from me
Circumstances will not dictate
Life is the greatest gift
Do your best to care
For yourself and the others
Look at life through their eyes
Then give them your best
“Ask yourself what you want
people to do for you,
then grab the initiative
and do it for them.”
© Terry S. Smith
written December 3, 2008
Quote by Eugene H. Peterson

Everyone has a story

September 14, 2009


It’s hard to change your thinking

When you are so sure you know

Look at your life with wisdom

Ask, “Is it working?”


Answer honestly

Be aware that death is real

It’s universal


Death deserves a good answer

One we must not be afraid

To consider all options

We only die once


Looking at my death

I found a window of hope

I have been surprised by life

I’m willing to share

With those who might just wonder

What information I have


Don’t assume you know

This is about life within

Be still and listen


Everyone has a story

I’ve learned something from each one

Thousands I have heard


You need someone to hear

How you travel in this life

Find someone who will listen

Who’s honest and cares


© Terry S. Smith

written June 20, 2009



There are many stories of kindness and heroism rising out of the tragedy of September 11, 2001, but you don’t hear many stories about the dogs that helped in the search for survivors.  On a recent trip to New Hampshire for the Heartbeat Retreat, I met an impressive man, Gary M. Jobes.  Gary was one of the fireman called to help with the rescue efforts.  He told me a story about the search and rescue dogs looking for survivors in the wreckage.  His words touched my heart, and I wanted to share the story he told me with you. 


Rescue Dogs

The dogs moved through the Twin Towers, looking and searching.  They were trained to find living people.  The dogs were confused and disoriented because no living people were to be found;  they were only finding the dead.  The firemen quickly started hiding so that these highly trained dogs could be rewarded by finding someone alive. 

The dogs spent long hours searching, and their paws became cut and burned.  The firemen were approached by a shoemaker who offered to custom make leather boots for each dog to cover their injured paws so they could continue to search.  Each dog had its own fitted boots and a number so the shoemaker could make a new set as needed.  He created the protection the dogs needed to do their job.  The firefighters, dogs, and shoemaker worked together as a team to help our country on the tragic day when 2,974 hearts stopped beating. 

For the Hurting 
The shoemaker gave
A gift with no strings attached
An example to follow
His only desire
Was to give all that he had
To save the lost ones
And give the compassion needed
With appreciation to Gary M. Jobes for sharing this story.
(Used with permission.)

Intentional kindness

September 9, 2009

Laughter is a good life sign
Good cheer is right medicine
For those we meet on the way
Lightness brings the light
Weep with those who weep
Be fully present with joy
And give peace where it is needed
Presence is power
Learn to live in the moment
Give intentional kindness
Your life is lived in a day
That is all we have
Remembering the past days
Can help us live now
Learn from your experience
Learn also from other’s lives
Awareness is most helpful
Create internal space
© Terry S. Smith
written October 27, 2008

Remembering a friend

September 7, 2009

His brother gave him the flask
Water to throw on the fire
Bob was only two years old
It changed his whole life
It was kerosene instead
Bob was burned very severely
Immeasurable pain was his
Both then and ahead
How did he survive?
Pain, grief, guilt, unspeakable
New journey for his family
I met him at twenty-one
He was angry and bitter
He had no friends to speak of
He let me be one
Bob became my great teacher
He let me walk beside him
He opened his heart and his thoughts
He became my friend
His last nine years:
My friend Bob Nelson
Died at the age of thirty
At the end he joked
He taught me to live
He numbered his days by one
Love led him to joy
What was his secret?
There was peace in his presence
Because love found him
This is a love for all
A treasure found in stillness
A voice I have heard
Where can this love be found?
Love is looking to find you
Raise your awareness
In Memory of Bob Nelson
© Terry S. Smith
written August 2008


September 5, 2009


Can anyone speak to life

How do I break the cycle

Handed down by my dad

Is there a model


It’s the hardest thing to find

I found that in my despair

I clarified my questions

Set my mind to life


I knew what I did not want

Can I find another way

Will my children weep like me

Can I give them love


I’ve seen despair win

Rob people from being loved

I am determined

To bring light, life and loving

In view of all that I meet


The path that I choose 

Will impact generations

I know this is true


We all leave a legacy

A life that we will pass on

I will not be uninformed

I’ll engage my mind



© Terry S. Smith

written September 5, 2009



September 2, 2009


Call out for insight

Cry out for understanding

Seek out the treasure


Knowledge is pleasant

Know what is appropriate

Use good discretion

Understanding will guard you

Wisdom will enter your heart


Seek understanding
call out
cry aloud
look for it
search for it
as for a hidden treasure

© Terry S. Smith

written September 2, 2009