In Others’ Words: Behave Yourself

Remember quote Dr Seuss

I’m writing this blog post early.

Come Friday — today — I’ll be in Wichita, Kansas, visiting my “safe harbor” friend, Fran. Technically, I’m going to meet with Fran’s book club to discuss Somebody Like You, my lastest novel. But after that, well, it’s all about time with Fran.

I’ve known Fran for decades. Yes, decades. And I have so many memories where she’s front and center. But there’s one that defines Fran … it’s my “remembering” memory of her, if you will.

Both our families were stationed in Florida, thanks to Uncle Sam since both our husbands were in the air force. I was going through some tough times — dealing with my “stuff,” as I like to generalize it. I was having a particularly rough day and ended up leaving my husband at home with our three kiddos. Kind of an impromptu — and temporary — running away from home.

But in our small town of Niceville (yes, Niceville), there wasn’t any place to run. McDonald’s? No, thank you. Walk the aisles of K-Mart? Again, no thank you. I drove up and down the streets for quite a while until this strong urge started tugging me to Fran’s house. Not knowing why, I headed that way. When I pulled into her cul de sac, there was Fran, standing in her doorway, as if she was waiting for me. Watching for me.

Because she was.

My husband had called to tell her that I was having a rough day. And Fran, being Fran, had been praying for me. And one of her prayers was that I would come to her home so that she could encourage and comfort me.

And that’s why Fran is my “safe harbor” friend.

Fran didn’t pray for me, wait for me, to be remembered. But that day — and her compassion for me — will always be a treasured “I remember Fran” memory.

In Your Words: Did today’s quote make you pause and think? Maybe remember someone whose actions changed your life — so that you will always remember them? Or maybe you thought about your own actions and how they might make an indelible impression on someone else today. I’d love for you to join the conversation and share a memory of someone who touched your life in an unforgettable way.

[Tweet “The #1 Reason to Behave Yourself #lifequotes #DrSeuss”] [Tweet “When Our Actions Create Memories #lifequotes #DrSeuss”]


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  1. August 29, 2014, 12:34 am   /  Reply

    Since I’m not well enough to leave the mesa unless it’s absolutely vital, my actions are not likely to make an indelible impression on anyone.

    Well, no. I think my hand made an indelible impression on a pesky rangeland fly.

    Two people from waaay back whose actions made an indelible impression are an orthodox Jewish couple who knew me as a child. They could see that I was growing up in at-risk situation (putting it mildly), and when attempts to adopt me failed, they made me a part of their emotional and religious life.

    I went to synagogue, lit menorahs, and had my very own yarmulke. Don’t know what their friends thought….”Dudes, you realize there’s an Asian kid among your brood?”

    Without them, I would have become a drug-dealing, abusive monster. They made me realize that there was a light on the other side of the darkness that filled most of my days, and they gave me a backbone that was flexible enough to let me bend with necessity, yet strong enough to refuse surrender to the Abyss.

    So there is a mezzuzah on my doorframe, and I said the prayer for it in pretty good Hebrew when I installed it. I’d say it’s for Doc and Ma…but it’s really for me, too.

    • August 29, 2014, 7:31 am   /  Reply

      Andrew, what a beautiful example of someone being a safe harbor in your life. We all need those people, even when our growing up years are not as severe as yours.

      You may not get out much, but you will be remembered for being an encourager by many people.

  2. Susan
    August 29, 2014, 7:35 am   /  Reply

    Ok. One, I love that quote and should think of it often:) And two, I love how God places friends in our lives and gives us hugs through them. That is a beautiful memory, Beth. Reminds you you’re never alone!

  3. August 29, 2014, 7:39 am   /  Reply

    I really like today’s quote. What a great thing to keep in mind as I live out each day. Not that I want to live with the purpose to be remembered, but I want to live a life that speaks through actions and words in a positive, hopefully uplifting way.

    I’m blessed with a few good friends. One friend and I have seen each other through struggles with infertility and parenting adoptive children. She’s listened to my insecurities and pointed me back to where my focus needed to be—Jesus. And then there’s another friend who’s been a huge encouragement on this writing journey. She’s spoken words of truth and light when I’ve felt like giving up. She prays for me for writing life and real life issues and she listens without judging.

  4. August 29, 2014, 8:47 am   /  Reply

    I actually just wrote a post for a group blog about someone whose actions changed my life. And she’s someone you know well, Beth…Susan May Warren. That first MBT retreat in 2009 changed my writing journey (literally–I don’t even write the same genre I was planning to before that retreat) and Susie’s encouragement that weekend changed my life.

  5. August 29, 2014, 11:47 am   /  Reply

    Alex Muir, my Bolivia mission team director. he told me to stop viweing myself negatively, and to start seeing myself as God does, through the eyes of Chris and His sacrifice.

  6. September 2, 2014, 8:25 pm   /  Reply

    Betty was my safe harbor friend. She saved our marriage, I’m sure of it, and probably our kids’ lives. 🙂 It’s wonderful to think back about our relationship.

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