Monday, June 18, 2012

The Train Is Moving Are You On Board?

Recently I had a conversation with a dear friend who shared a quote he received and it said, "If you're absent during my struggle, don't expect to be present during my success."

Overall I do understand what the author means by saying if you can't be with me in the rough times, why would I want to share the good times that come my way after I've put in all of the work.  There are definitely a lot of people that jump on a train only when it's running and moving forward, but as I thought about the whole message, I also feel that it takes some people a moment to even realize what's going on, let alone know to get on board!

Don't write off everyone just because they may have been a little slow with getting on board and understanding your program, dream or vision.  They may be the very caboose you need.  Caboose's were once used and thought of as a functional part of the train.  It is clear that a train can operate without a caboose, but it originally was meant to provide shelter at the rear of the train for those that had to work in the back (which historically we know who that meant). Conductors also often handled business from a table that was located in the caboose and sometimes it had to serve a their living quarters for long trips.  So cabooses serve(d) a purpose.

I recently had the opportunity to travel down South and I visited Savannah, Georgia and Charleston, South Carolina.  While visiting I also learned a lot about the beginnings of the railroad system that was laid across the South and how slave labor and Freedman (free black men) that were incarcerated were used to build these systems.  They were slaves to the railroad.  Historically we've heard a lot about the Pullman Porters, the dining car cooks and waiters, but we've not heard much about the ones who had to do the back breaking work of the digging, construction, and laying track.  This work was not for the faint of heart, many died hard deaths from this work, including women and children.   (You can learn more about it by reading Railroads in the African American Experience by Theodore Kornweibel, Jr.).

I can't go into all that touched me regarding this subject, but more than ever, I want to encourage everyone to learn to forgive a little, the brother or sister who may have been a little slow,  may be the one that saves you down the road when you least expect it. The train is still moving!

Healing Without Hate:  It's a choice. It's a lifestyle. Pass it on!

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