A short time ago, I started to write a letter to my six grandchildren. However, before I finished my letter, I was invited to speak to a local group of junior and senior high school students. I was happy to do so. So, I took the beginning of my letter, added to it, and it became the substance of my remarks. Following my talk, the students strongly suggested that my remarks should to be shared with a larger group of folks. I am happy to do so. The following are the main points of my talk....

Life teaches us the great lessons and bestows on us many special gifts. True, we may not have control over all the hard lessons we encounter in life, but we can decide if these lessons are going to devour us or empower us. Whether you realize it or not, you are, for the most part, the director of your own life. Decide your aim, choose your dream, and strive to pursue it. Weak desires bring little results just as a small fire gives little heat. Strong desires are a driving force for thoughtful folks to achieve powerful results. You know, thoughtful people succeed; Thoughtful people empower; thoughtful people inspire. Empower yourself with inspired thoughtful intentions and allow yourself to succeed at all you do.

Achieving your goal is just a matter of getting up every time you fall down. Life may throw you what you see as undeserved curves. Just keep fouling them off, the right pitch will come and when it does, be prepared to run the bases. In short, have dreams and hopes... for you see... your goals are the fuel which motivates you toward your achievements. All of us need to start someplace. Every monarch was once a crying infant, and every building was once a picture. It is not about where you are today, but where and how you will reach for the tomorrows in your life. And so, never under-estimate yourself or your abilities. Corrected errors are the stepping stones that will take you from where you are today, to where you want to be in the days ahead.

Think about it...somewhere out there in the future... some of the greatest thoughts and ideas are yet to be expressed; YOU MAY EXPRESS THEM. Some of the finest buildings and highways are yet to be built; YOU MAY BE THE ONE TO BUILD THEM. Some of the greatest pictures are yet to be painted; YOU MAY PAINT THEM. Some of the finest prose and musical selections are yet to be written; YOU MAY WRITE THEM. Some of the finest of gymnast, violinist, guitarist,

equestrians, athletes, or artists are yet to emerge, YOU MAY BE THAT PERSON. And, some of the greatest discoveries in science and the humanities are yet to be discovered; YOU MAY DISCOVER THEM. And you know, some of the most thoughtful and dedicated people are yet to be identified; YOU may be one so identified.

At times, we make progress toward our desired goals of accomplishment. And then, there are times when things just seem to be at a standstill or things are just not 'taking off . When everything seems to be at that point, remember, the aircraft takes off against the wind not with it. Face into the winds of life for the necessary lift. Turn your cannot's into "I can do it" , and your hopes into plans. You know, all the water could never sink a ship unless it gets inside. Likewise, all the pressures of life can never hurt you unless you let them in.

You see, you can be the master architect of your life. For only as high as you can reach can you grow, only as far as you seek can you go, only as deep as you look can you see, only as much as you dream can you be. There is a whole world out there waiting ... waiting for someone or somebody to help to make a difference. YOU may be just that person.

As you chart the course of your future, you have a precious "built-in" personal radar system. This radar system will serve you well. For you see, when you find a dream inside your HEART, don't ever let it go.... for dreams are the tiny seeds from which happy and productive tomorrows grow. Perhaps you will not remember much of what we have written here. But , we urge you to take three words with you from this message. We suggest that you store these three words in your memory bank for immediate retrieval when the need arises. These three simple and deeply felt words are: FOLLOW YOUR HEART.