Teachers are an important part of my life. Early on I learned to seek them out. Welcome them when they appear. Thank them for finding me. See the meaning in the experiences we share. Join me here as I honor one of my teachers. See if I learn the lesson taught to me.
Eulogy for James Louis Andersen Delivered October 21, 2016, at Hamilton Funeral Home West Des Moines, Iowa
PLEASE take a deep breath,
Again, breathe deeply, exhale slowly.
FOLLOW the breath into your heart.
Push aside sorrow,
Let go of sadness.
Hear Jim’s soft, distinctive voice inviting us
To join together,
To experience, and then reflect.
To muster up the courage,
To LISTEN respectfully and intentionally,
To share, internalize, and grow.
LOOK at Jim. See how he nods.
Notice that with each nod, Jim encourages you to explore and learn.
FEEL a peaceful energy growing within you.
As the energy grows, feel a desire to strive, and serve,
To fully actualize your self.
AS the energy grows within you, LOOK at Jim.
See the way his presence makes it okay for you to cry,
To play, laugh, create,
And to love.
NOW, think about my words,
The way both evoke, in your heart:
Feelings of Jims enduring friendship,
His never-ending support and encouragement,
And, his courageous teaching.
IN this moment, with these words, experiences, and feelings,
Let us, together…acknowledge,
That what resides in our hearts,
Is the MESSAGE OF JIM ANDERSEN’S LIFE.
PLEASE NOD if you understand this.
WELL… it would be easy. Actually quite convenient, for me to stop here.
BUT I can’t. Jim would’t let me. Perhaps you feel the same way.
No, Jim would say, “Mark, what are you feeling?”
GOING deeper, I realize that merely carrying the message of Jim’s life,
In my heart,
Is not enough.
NO, every second of every hour of every day, I must go into my heart,
Where the message resides,
And from there I must emerge.
AS I do, I send forth the message of my life,
With each, and every breath,
Action, thought, hope, and aspiration.
IN this way I will honor the life of Jim Andersen, my teacher, friend, and companion.
I will demonstrate that I learned the lesson of his life, through the way I live mine.
Note: This is the 2nd post in the My Teachers series. Please click the subscribe button on the right side of the blog page to be notified of future posts.