Understanding today's struggles, can be key.

To My Dad, Hercules Himself

"It's so easy for you to forget that you're never alone. You have your mom and me in your corner, always there to help you."

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Earlier this week, my dad and I had a conversation that I'll probably never forget.

I've always admired my dad for being a hardworking man as well as a good husband and father, but it never hit me how hard being all of those things could be until I became an adult.

Granted, I still don't have kids, and I couldn't possibly imagine myself having some when I'm still struggling with school, and that's exactly what a lot of twenty-year-olds feel like.

Adulting is a difficult, new thing for many of us, and it's ridiculously easy to let it consume us even when nothing's really happening.

I always kind of took it for granted you know, everything my dad ever gave me, until it was time for me to step into his adult shoes and try to make a name for myself in this scary world.

Suddenly, it was just me out there having to deal with insane amounts of homework and the stress of not doing well on exams, wondering if I'm being social enough to have connections in the future, not to mention the constant reminder of how expensive school is and how failure in this world isn't an option.

When I told my dad this, he basically laughed. It wasn't meant to hurt me, but it did because that was just more proof to me that he really didn't understand what it was like to be in my shoes.

Almost instantly he regretted laughing and cleared his throat. "It's easy for you to forget that you're not alone," he said. "You have your mom and me in your corner, always there to help you."

It was then that he told me stories about his childhood and the struggles he went through as a person up to now. He reminded me that struggles never really go away, but with the better part of time, they fix themselves.

After 21 years, I saw my dad in a new light, and I couldn't help but be grateful for it.

"We're all different," he said at one point. "We all have different struggles, but we all feel pain, and it's okay to feel pain, just remember that you are never alone—no matter who you may be."

I'm not sure if you know how grateful I am to have a father like you.

Thank you for reminding me that there's no shame in failing as long as you get back up with the condition to pursue your dream twice as hard.

Thank you for not really understanding how depression and anxiety work but for still giving me my space and doing the best you can to make sure I'm okay.

Not many parents do that you know; mental health is something that's still not understood. Not just by your generation, but by many in mine as well. You still try, and that's more than I could ever ask for.

Thank you for reminding me that you'll always be in my corner, supporting me no matter what.

I'm ridiculously proud to say that you're my hero, and I wouldn't want it any other way.

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Acts 1:8 Ministry Explains How To Teach Your Child To Be Charitable And Compassionate

Acts 1:8 Ministry, a non-profit organization based out of Wisconsin, believes in building strong community foundations with integrity and humility.

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There have been many natural disasters that have wreaked havoc in the United States and around the world such as tornadoes, hurricanes, earthquakes, floods, tsunamis, and volcanic eruptions. Over the last few decades, the generosity of Americans has become well-known, and it's vital to inspire this charitable and compassionate concern for others down to future generations.

Acts 1:8 Ministry has helped enrich the lives of others around the globe through the support of generous donors and volunteers who want to help spread kindness, strengthen their faith, grow the Christian church, and improve communities. To pay it forward, Acts 1:8 Ministry explains below how parents can instill charitable and compassionate qualities in their children through word, action and leading by example.

Start At Home

If you have more than one child, you know there are those times they don't want to share toys, snacks, or even friends. Teaching siblings to share is less complicated when you teach your children why the love for each other is so important. In a family unit, each member depends on all the others. Parents provide shelter, food, clothing, and different needs. Children contribute by helping with chores, obeying house rules, and doing their homework. Mutual love and respect are what strengthens the family unit. Working and giving together teaches invaluable lessons to children and builds a secure family unit.

Working Together For Others

Donating time at a food pantry, shelter, or meal distribution center for low-income families or homeless folks in your local area teaches your children the importance of caring for those who are less fortunate. Explain why it is wrong to judge people who need free services to survive. Your children may encounter people who are dirty and wearing smelly clothes, and they need to know not to say anything that would hurt their feelings or embarrass them.

Giving Together For Others

If your state has a beverage deposit on soda, juice, and alcoholic beverages, you and your children can collect discarded cans and bottles. The money you receive from their redemption can be donated to a variety of charitable causes including animal shelters, food banks, clothing distribution centers, or a local charity you support. There is always a need for cash at all of these facilities. Plan annual family fundraisers, such as yard, craft, bake, and plant sales. Donate the money earned to one or more charitable projects the family chooses together.

Establish Charitable Habits

Establish habits and family routines to encourage charitable acts. Choose things that fit your family's lifestyle. Keep a large "charity" jar and place a dollar amount in it every time the family does something special such as going to the movies, spending a day at a water park, eating out, or taking a vacation. Whenever the family spends money on a fun adventure or outing, setting a little money aside to be used for those who don't have the same opportunities helps children understand the need for caring about other people. Other things you can do as a family include:

• Reduce the amount of clothing in your closets, and donate clean and undamaged items to a charity that distributes clothing to low-income families.

• Clean out the toys. Donate unbroken toys and games to homeless shelters that take in families or to a home for battered women and their children.

• Donate your time to visit a nursing home, and talk to different residents. Encourage your children to ask the older folks to tell stories about their childhood.

• Bake cookies or bread together and distribute to older people that live in your neighborhood. Have your children make a card to give with the food gift.

• Help a neighbor who has been sick with yard work, taking out the trash, or other chores he or she is not able to do.

Children love making others happy and will continue to feel the same way as adults if you help them establish the habits of caring, sympathy, helping, and compassion when they are young. By teaching children the core values of caring and compassion, future generations of Americans will continue to be the world's most generous and compassionate people.

About Acts 1:8 Ministry:

Acts 1:8 Ministry is a non-profit organization that equips Christians to care, share and connect people to Christ through Christian kindness. The Planned Acts of Christian Kindness® Program has touched thousands of lives in the US and over 100 countries worldwide. Through the Water Project, over 130 water wells drilled, blessing hundreds of thousands of lives with clean water.

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A Poem: My Mother

In honor of Mother's Day, that was on the 12th, here is a poem dedicated to my mother.

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To the only person who can be my mentor, friend, and leader at the same time

To someone who would make me read my own books before bedtime

And puts everything down to make sure there is a smile on my face

To the person that I find impossible to ever replace.


Somehow you are always right even when it seems wrong

And when the worst does happen, how do you still manage to stay so strong?

I'm not only impressed but inspired by you

Knowing that somehow you'll always know me better than I do.


When I'm frustrated and annoy you, you simply try to understand me

Because you have always told me that even when you can't understand, plain acceptance is the key

You have listened to all my laughs, heard me cry, and felt my emotions like they were your own

You are the only reason I am joyous and the security I need to know that I am never alone.


To the only person who has truly taught me how to live

And watched me grow and make mistakes yet still knows how to forgive

Because that's who she is, certainly not like any other

There are many women but none like my own mother.

Happy Mother's Day!

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