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{Straight From the Heart}   *My Hero!*  12/7/00
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If you enjoy this free daily email service, I encourage you to
spread the word to family and friends, that we may bring inspiration
into the lives of many!  If you are not on the list and this has
been passed along to you, join us by sending a blank email to: 

Thunder27@aol.com

I appreciate any feedback or constructive criticism, so feel free to
write me (Michael T. Powers) and let me know what you think!

Just joined us and want to see all the past stories we've run? 
Visit our inspirational website at:
Straight From the Heart
http://www.storiesfrommyheart.com

Writer's guidelines for Straight From the Heart can be found here:
Writer's Guidelines
http://storiesfrommyheart.com/writer_s_guidelines/
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Today we have two hero stories!  For those of you who just joined the list, we challenged everyone who is a SFTH member to write a letter to their hero.  Do you have a hero in your life? We want you to take a few moments and write about him or her. Yes, that means you have to stretch your fingers out and do some typing or better yet, make it a handwritten note. When you are done, send it to your hero. That simple act will not only make that person's day, but it will be your way of thanking them for all they do in your life.  If you want to share the hero letter with us, send it to:

thunder27@aol.com

We may share it on the list!

We did this last year and some amazing things happened!  Check out our website:
Straight From the Heart
http://www.storiesfrommyheart.com

Click on the Heroes Button on the left hand side to see the amazing stories! 
To start the ball rolling I shared the letter I sent to my hero and mentor Bill Greer on our website. (Includes a photo of us!)

You may never know how much that simple act of writing a heartfelt letter will mean to that special someone in your life.  Read the first hero letter response at the Heroes page and you will be touched and challenged.  I guarantee it!
Have a great week and take some time to write to that special someone who has made a difference in your life!
Michael
P.S.  We did not include the thoughts for the day to save some space today...they will be back tomorrow!

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MY HERO

By Judy Kiser


In my Webster dictionary the definition of hero is as follows: he?ro/:a mythological or legendary figure of great strength or ability 2: a man admired for his achievements and qualities 3: the chief male character in a literary or dramatic work. But this is not my definition of a hero.

My hero is not a man, he has no great physical strength, nor does he have any great physical ability. My hero has never thrown a baseball or shot any basketball hoops. My hero is eleven years old and he is my grandson. And to me he is a legendary figure! Cory has cerebral palsy and hydrocephalus; he is confined to a wheelchair, has very limited use of his right arm and hand, and slurred speech.

Cory's greatest achievement is just getting through his days. He doesn't know any words such as cant; wont, cheat, steal, kill, or hate. All that Cory knows is un-conditional love for everyone that he meets. His love for his fellow man is colorblind; it is also ethnic blind. There is no soul on this earth that my little hero doesn't like, no one that he wont give a smile to. And when you get a Cory smile, you receive the most precious of all gifts! Cory's smiles light up any room, and will touch any heart.

I know that it sounds selfish, but I think God put Cory on this earth for the sole purpose of teaching his Granny the true meaning of love! Not the common everyday variety of love. But the deep down, soul touching, kind of love. The kind of love, that warms you from the heart, to the very core of your being.

As you can see, my hero will never become the president, nor will he be a star athlete, and never will he be on the silver screen. But, I don't give it a second thought; he's still my hero. What he is, and what he gives is a greatness that few can compete with.

My message to all that will read my little story; is love comes in all kinds of wrappings. Look around and discover what God has given you. Cherish what you have, and be thankful that you are able to share it with others. And let the love flow!

Judy Kiser, 2000
judykiser@earthlink.net

Send Judy an email and let her know what you thought of her hero story!
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I live in Brunswick, Ga. with my husband Roger and our five dogs. I work full time as a server, and enjoy writing bedtime stories for my grandchildren. 
Check out her websites!

http://www.heartwarmers4u.com/members?judyjudy
http://www.geocities.com/judyjudy_31520
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Judy's husband Roger is the author of the new book, Orphan- A True Story of Abandonment, Abuse, and Redemption which hit bookstores nation-wide last Friday.

In the first day it hit the top 200 best-selling books at Amazon.com!  If you haven't ordered your copy be sure to do so.  It will go straight to your heart, I promise you!
Pick it up in any book store or order from Amazon.com at:
Orphan

http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/1580624480/o/qid=975333679/sr=8-1/straighfromthe0a/107-5931457-7011735

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My Hero, My Friend

By Karen Smith


When thinking about who is my hero, my best friend comes to mind.
Her name is Pat and she has Multiple Sclerosis.  But Multiple Sclerosis doesn't have her!

I met Pat when I was searching for a church because of feeling led by God to move on to somewhere else.  I didn't know just where to even start. I ran into an old classmate from high school and they invited me to church. It is where I still go and it is where I met Pat.

I remember it as though it happened just yesterday even though it has been eight years since I first walked in the doors of my home church. I was nervous and quietly went in to sit down with my classmate. We were sitting quietly and I was taking in my surroundings before the service started when a couple came over and sat beside me. They introduced themselves to me, it was Pat and her husband, Barry.
Pat made the introductions and asked me a few general questions about myself and then told me that if I needed anything, they were around. They continued to sit beside me during the service and we talked more afterwards.  She invited me to come to her Sunday School the next Sunday. I told her I would.
What stood out to me the most at that time wasn't that she was friendly to me, a stranger, but that she was walking with a cane and seemed to have a limp.  I didn't want to intrude in her life so I never asked her what was wrong. But it wasn't long before she told me and this broke the ice to a deeper, closer friendship that we enjoy even now.

She got diagnosed with MS about 10 years ago and it was awhile before she started having all of the symptoms that would eventually have her losing a lot of control over her right side. She has a brace on her right leg now and although her MS hasn't progressed rapidly over the eight years we have been friends, she still has spells where she can't get around and is homebound.  When going through these spells, several other symptoms show themselves and it makes it a danger to her to leave the house because of falling.  She told me once that she has fallen so much that she works her Guardian Angel overtime!  Some falls have been so hard that it was a miracle she wasn't hurt very seriously!

What makes her my hero is that no matter what kind of day she is having, she never complains.  She won't let her illness get her down and keep her there. Sometimes she gets discouraged but never gives up.  She is brave and she is courageous. She knows there is no cure for this disease right now but that never stops her from hoping and having faith.  Whenever I get to feeling sorry for myself, I just look at her and see that I have so much to be thankful for.  She is always thinking about others instead of herself. That is what makes her my hero. Would I be as strong if something like this happened to me?  I really don't know; I would hope I would.  I know she would be there for me if it did.

We make contact with each other, daily, whether it is just on the phone, by way of email, or I go pick her up and we go out to lunch and do some shopping, if she is having a pretty good day. I believe God brought us together because I have since developed very bad arthritis in all my joints which has slowed me down a lot. When we go out anywhere, it isn't a problem with us going at a slow pace.  We take our time and rest when we need to and just sit and talk; there is no need to rush through the day like we did when we were both young ladies.

She is a lot like a Mom to me but also seems like the older sister I never had.  We have been through a lot together over the past eight years, sometimes joy, sometimes tears.  There is nothing we can't talk to each other about. We have a bond that I believe started in heaven, when God knew us "before the womb".  We were close friends in heaven and it has taken almost half of our lives to find each other again.  We even have a lot in common, considering the age difference, but to us, there doesn't even feel like there is a day's difference in our ages.
We always have our opinions but have never let it get in the way of our friendship.  It is more than that; it is a sisterhood.

She gives me strength, she is my mentor, she is my adopted Mom, she is my sister, she is my friend, and she is my hero.
I love ya Pat!

Blessings,
Karen Smith
isaiah@citlink.net

Send Karen an email and let her know what you thought about her hero story!
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I am married, have a son, Nathanial, who is 5 yrs. old and started his adventures in kindergarten.  We live in the southern part of West Virginia, where we have the beauty of the Four Seasons and the mountains around us.

I have always made friends that have helped me become who I am today; my life would be different if it were not for the friendships I had growing up. The made a mark on my life and it always changed me. But Pat has made the biggest imprint on my life and I believe we are meant to be friends until death parts us or until the return of Jesus, with the latter continuing our friendship in heaven and Pat not having a leg brace or a cane and myself not slowed down by arthritis!

visit Strawberry Heaven
please vote for my site at CrossDaily Christian sites
http://www.angelfire.com/wv/STRAWBERRYPATCH

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