Sundays were always my favorite day of the week, after church, we would load up in the car and go to grandma’s house. Grandma’s house on Sunday was always like attending a family reunion, it was the meeting place of all the sisters, brothers and cousins. You could go to grandma’s house and pickup on many things that would build ones character, my favorite thing was listening to the old wise tales.
My grandmother’s house was the first place where I heard the saying that, you should practice what you preach. It was very confusing to me back then because, it just seem like to me, my relatives had their own favorite sayings and beliefs of what that saying meant. To make sense of their artistic views was just a bit much for me at the young age of nine. I mean really, “only a proud frog praises his pond” what in the world did that mean?
As I became older, practice what you preach had rung in my head like a church bell because, I had learned to practiced myself what I would advise others to do. Of course, I am not perfect and it’s hard to practice living by your own actions and, words of wisdom.
When I finally became to know myself, my path to success became clearer. When soldiers enter the army, one of the most dreaded parts of their Basic Training is the gas chamber. As a Non-Commissioned Officer Instructor, it was my job to instruct soldiers on the correct way to dawn their chemical protective equipment. I would always go into the gas chamber first to build their confidence in their equipment.
After completing the gas chamber, I would sit down with the soldiers and tell them one of my war stories.I had been in a real chemical environment twice to be exact, where I could have been badly injured or died but, what saved me from a life of uncertainty was that, my chemical protective equipment was dawned correctly.
As a Non-Commissioned Officer in the United States Army, leading by example was my war cry. This practice would earn me the respect from our nation’s sisters, brothers and cousins. I had learned do away with double standards because; I could not stand on both sides of the fence at the same time. I had to choose one side or, the other.
In finding my path, I would not let the blades of grass on my side of the fence turn brown and if so, I would nurture them.
It has been thirty-seven years now and, our family still may have an occasional get together. I often wish that I could relive those Sundays at grandmas house, where you were enriched with family entertainment and, also where I first heard that,” you must practice what you preach.
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