He Blogs


Kim Williams' Blog, Kim's Korner, provides a personal look into the life and thinking of a Southern man. Husband, Former Pastor, Writer, Author and Serial Dog Owner, Kim Williams writes reflective and humorous posts.

The Anonymous People - A Movie That Is Changing Our World

For too long now stigmas, misunderstandings and overall social environment have kept one fact secret. Over 23 million Americans are living in long-term recovery from addiction to alcohol and other drugs.. Why do we hide?

...over 23 million Americans living in long-term recovery from addiction to alcohol and other drugs.
— The Anonymous People

I ask you to take about 2 hours of your life and watch the movie, The Anonymous People. It's available on Netflix, Amazon Prime and iTunes. If you're in the Triad of North Carolina, you can join a group of us as we watch and chat together. Attendees will be supporters of recovery as well as people in recovery. 

Details in this photo.


Consider You Awesome

Stop with me, just a moment. We are awesome and amazing creatures living in an infinitely wonder filled world and we need to remember it. Observe that our lives are unbelievably amazing. Consider for now that the finite details of each muscle, skin cell, bone. Nerve and sinew working together to open and close our hand contains an amazing microcosm of miracles packed one upon another. The waves of environmental chemistry and pulsating, sporadic and rhythmical fluctuations of thermal connections of this typical, coming and going of sun, moon, tides and seasons world mark our time. Yet, if we stop and consider it all – even just the part that we call natural – how wondrous and amazing is our life?

Consider it for a moment…with me…deal?

Writing Epitaphs

At the end of the fight
Is a tomb stone white
With the name of the late deceased
And an epitaph drear
A fool lies here
Who tried to hustle the east.
— Rudyard Kipling

 

Do you ever give thought to the epitaph you want on your tomb stone? Or, do you ever wonder what your surviving relatives (always thought that was a strange connotation. Like they survived your dying?) would inscribe about you?

Apparently the possibilities are wide open. 

Here lies the body
of Jonathan Blake
Stepped on the gas
Instead of the brake.
Memory of an accident in a Uniontown, Pennsylvania cemetery 

Here lays Butch,
We planted him raw.
He was quick on the trigger,
But slow on the draw.
In a Silver City, Nevada, cemetery 

I was somebody.
Who, is no business
Of yours.
Someone determined to be anonymous in Stowe, Vermont

And my favorite,

"I told you I was sick!"
In a Georgia cemetery

On a more serious note, I think I know what mine may turn out to be, if I live that long. 

My wife and granddaughter (then 5 years old) talk about me a good bit. In a loving effort to help our granddaughter understand the people in her world, her grandmother will often explain other people’s behavior. I’m no exception. One evening, in anticipation of the coming morning – my granddaughter asked, “Will granddaddy Kim be here in the morning?” My wife explained, “No. He’ll leave early for work, before you are awake. He goes to work every day to make money so we can have food, a house and other nice things.”

That next morning early, I walked into the bedroom after my shower, to find them both snuggled into our bed, resting in the darkness. I dressed for work quietly, in the dark, and heard them talking.

Granddaughter: There’s granddaddy Kim… in the dark.
Grandmother: Yes. He knew we would be resting and didn't want to bother us. He’s thoughtful like that. He’ll go down and feed the dogs and let them out, too. So they can run up and join us for a snuggle. Isn’t it nice of him to do that for us?

So, as I’m thinking about how my life is impacting others, I’m hearing my wife tell my grandchild that I am a thoughtful, considerate provider. I've worked hard to be a lot of things: an excellent salesperson, a reliable employee, successful in business, an able public speaker.... But here I am, looking from the point of view of my family and I find that I am seen in a different light.

Provider. Considerate. Thoughtful. 

Honestly, that is an epitaph, be it written on the stone above my grave or on the folds of the hearts of those who remember me, that suits me just fine.

 

Speaking of Snow...US Postal Service Motto...or not?!

What is the United States Postal Service motto? You might be surprised...

Are you thinking something to do with rain, snow, sleet...?

Contrary to popular belief, the U.S. Postal Service has no "official motto."

The familiar sentence you are thinking of is this:

“Neither snow nor rain nor heat nor gloom of night stays these couriers from the swift completion of their appointed rounds.”

This is commonly misidentified as the creed of our mail carriers, but actually it is just the inscription found on the General Post Office in New York City at 8th Avenue and 33rd Street.

Here's how the official Web site of the U.S. Postal Service describes the origin of the inscription.

This inscription was supplied by William Mitchell Kendall of the firm of McKim, Mead & White, the architects who designed the New York General Post Office. Kendall said the sentence appears in the works of Herodotus and describes the expedition of the Greeks against the Persians under Cyrus, about 500 B.C. The Persians operated a system of mounted postal couriers, and the sentence describes the fidelity with which their work was done. Professor George H. Palmer of Harvard University supplied the translation, which he considered the most poetical of about seven translations from the Greek.



New Website format...blog

I'm playing around with SquareSpace design options... please pardon the temporary mess.

 

Oh...and considering a change in the name...

Rising

You know that morning sky, when the rising sun twists and swirls buoyant colors of orange and yellow with grey and blue? When the sight of it stops you and snatches your breath away, And in that moment you are reminded of beauty, real wonder that is this life and you stand there in that moment, that transient gift, knowing, aching and longing for more...as the colors turn to light and the day settles into normal? It is then that we are refreshed, reminded that this life, this breath, this loving is worth enduring years of normal for the gift of such a moment. Because such beauty cannot be erased from the lens of our minds or the canvas of our hearts. Beauty cannot be forgotten or abandoned. That's today.

Good morning.

Thankful Attitude

The greatest discovery of any generation is that a human being can alter his life by altering his attitude.
— Williams James

We all know that our attitude toward just about anything can create joy and peace in our living. We also know that we often don't do the work of crafting a better attitude. This is particularly common our holiday activities. Here are three reasons we might fail to develop a grateful attitude and what we can do about it.

1. I'm  just too tired. The thought of reciting a a clever mantra or making a list of "things I'm thankful for" seems like too much work. Solution - get some rest. Sometimes I need to make time for sleep, quiet moments and space for...doing nothing. I need to try excusing myself from all the hustle and bustle long enough to walk down the sidewalk or breathe in the crisp fall air. Watching  a leaf fall and pondering for 60 seconds what analogy it might provide for my life is a wonderful thing.

2. I suffer from a moment of "it won't work for me." I get it. It is easy for me to offer pastoral advice or elderly counsel to others. I can believe in their progress through attitude adjustment, BUT when I'm dealing with my emotions,  my disappointments...well...that's different. I'm different. When we are in the midst of the emotional storm of guilt, shame or regret it is hard to see beyond the mess. Time to "phone a friend!" I have a hand of trusted, caring, honest friends and they are just the fix for my self-centered, myopic, 'poor me' attitude. A quick call to one of them will often walk me right out of the mess and into enough belief that I'll do those attitude changing things that I need to do.

3. I get out of the habit. Attitude management is really more about my daily self-care and personal development habits. I know that daily prayer, consistently reading positive and spiritual  words, times of playfulness, laughter and being in nature all help my attitude and perspective.  Yet, as much as I am a creature of habit, I will also break my routine here and there and soon I'm out of sorts.  At those times, I do well to remember what makes for a better attitude and make sure I'm mixing, routinely, a good measure of that activity into my day...week...month...now.

This is a season of thanksgiving, gratitude and joy. I can get off track. Here's my reminder to get my attitude back into shape.

Happy Thanksgiving!

My Attitude Could Whip Your…A

My Attitude Could Whip Your…

“The greatest discovery of any generation is that a human being can alter his life by altering his attitude.” –Williams James
 

I spent 8 years in higher education, 15 years beyond that as a pastor for a mainline denomination. I've studied human psychology, pastor counseling and theology. It took a man with no more than a high school education and a background in construction to teach me something real about people, about me.

I was having a bad day and it wasn't even 8:00 am. I’d had an argument with my wife. My children were not behaving the way I wanted them to, and my work schedule for the day was so packed that I knew I wouldn’t be able to get all of it done. My brain hurt, my back hurt and I pretty much hated everything and everybody at that moment.

My boss at the time took note of my bad attitude and asked me to come into his office. I did. He listened to my story and then paused before saying, “You have two choices this morning. You can stay pissed and have a sorry day, or you can do something about your attitude.” He reached in the desk drawer and handed me a card that resembled one of those “do not disturb” door hangers. On the front and back were a series of sayings, positive affirmations. He told me to take it and if I wanted to change my attitude to read the sayings out load on the way to my first appointment for that day. My attitude wasn’t very receptive. I thought of all the psychological cliques that I knew. I thought about how what I was going through was much bigger than a few clever and witty sayings. I thought of a hundred reasons why his suggestion was stupid. I didn’t challenge him. I took the card and headed for the truck. As I walked out of his office he said one more thing, “I bet you’re too chicken to try it.”

I smiled and for some reason warmed up to the idea of proving him wrong. On the way to my first appointment, I read them out load:

“I will win. Why? I’ll tell you why – because I have faith courage and enthusiasm.” 
“Today I will meet the right people in the right place at the right time for the betterment of all.” 
“I see opportunity in every challenge.”
“When I fail, I only look at what I did right.”

“I’ll never take advice from someone more messed up than I am.”

The readings continued, and so did a change in my attitude. There is great power in the words we speak to ourselves. By the time I was done I did feel better and begin to think on the things I could do to be effective and successful that day. I have never forgotten that lesson.

What we believe, about ourselves and our world is directly related to the words we say to ourselves and others.

An Open Letter to #Hallmark

Dear Hallmark:

 

Thank you for your wide and creative selection of cards. As a man, it is most helpful that you provide me with cards that speak of love, commitment, passion and adoration between a husband and wife. At each season and holiday, when I reach to purchase a card – I am glad you have thought through these details for me.

I would like to make one request, however. Can you please not design these cards to appeal to me just in order to sell them? Yes, I like brown, tan and other earth tone colors. I am a bit uncomfortable holding flowery, glitter laden and sparkling cards that sing love songs. And yet, even at the risk of making me uncomfortable can you NOT design any cards that will result in my wife saying – “How nice. You picked this one because you like the colors – didn’t you?” I promise I will buy whatever you sell, just help me out, will you?

 

Sincerely,

Guy that Likes Earth Tones…

9-11 #Poetry - Eagles Weep

Eagles weep the dust of fury
            Glory hangs in a breeze filled sky
Trumpets howl forth silence
            Empty eyes gaze on debris and cry

Paradox rains upon sweltering souls
            Discordant melodies find no harmonic tone
Sleeping giants fail to wake
           Dreams of horror in daylight come

Restrained talons seek to rip
            Flesh and bone. Retribution wails
Bridled shouts from viper lips           
             Broken tongues speechless, still

Such foreign chaos, grief born questions
            Here rests doubt, fear rooting
Anger to pain beget rage
            Tearing fabric, destroying the shoot

A blast through heart’s cage
            Cries, screams and eternal rage
Why! Demands our soul
            Why? Defiant voices entreat

Into this realm of despair
            Touching sinew of exposed hope
Lifting corpse-like remains
            Our Hope stands, lifted hands

In a speechless voice the whisper comes
            Gentle words rock our perilous stance
Words carefully spoken, deeply heard
            Faith, Hope, Love the memory calls

Again, glorious birds will find their songs
            Heavy banners will lift in a gentle breeze
Clarion call of brass sounds, proclaims
            Life has come and still remains

-Kim E Williams
September 12, 2001