Positive Inspirational Stories
Positive Featured Inspirational Story - April 1 to May 31, 2012
They are just empty cars
On this warm pre-spring afternoon, I sit on the balcony, enjoy the weather, the view and a good book. A couple of redwing blackbirds cling to the branches of a nearby tree and sing for the coming of spring. Across the tracks, on the other side of the creek, thirty head of cattle quietly feed on a pile of hay left by the farmer. Soon they'll graze on new grass in the pasturefurther down the creek.
I lift my head at the sound of a train's horn wailing into the still air. A mile down the tracks that pass between the creek and our apartment complex, I see the headlights on the enginecar grow brighter. My peace is interrupted as the train races by and our kitten cringes by the balcony doors, begging to escape the terrifying noise.
I let her in and watch the rail cars roll by, some more noisy than others. The full cars,rumble pass, but the empty ones rattle and bang along, making more noise than the others. They're painful to the ears. The comparison between the full and empty cars makes me think of the people I've known throughout my fifty years of life.
There was Don. I remember when he hired me. He was a client of mine, but my job was lost to cut backs at my company. Don offered me a job at his company. It was a pleasure to work under his leadership. He didn't order his employees, he guided them. For example: during our first weekly meeting, he didn't tell me what to do. He looked at me and asked, 'Whatdid you and your team accomplish last week?'
I stumbled for an answer. Don then asked, 'What are your plans for this week?' I stumbled for an answer again.
Those two questions guided me to think and plan. He never caught me off guard again. Each meeting I showed up with our accomplishments for the week and our plans for the next.
Another empty rail car rattled by and I remembered the bullies from my childhood. They strutted around the school yard, bumped into smaller kids and called others names. These bullies usually had two or three others snickering at their side.The rattle of the car reminded me of a guy I used to work with as a telecommunications technician many years ago.
When I worked on a trouble, he would wander by and sneer, 'Whatare you doing that for? Do you know what you're doing?' I ignored him, but his snicker was more than audible, as he made his way down the aisle of racks filled with telecommunication equipment. I tried to concentrate on my task. I had been sure of myself. His words made me doubt my capabilities.
You meet quiet and noisy ones as you travel through life.The quiet ones are full of knowledge: great leaders and mentors.They carry us on a great adventure. The noisy ones: empty of knowledge, think they are leaders, but bluster through life giving nothing in return. They think they fool those around them by making a lot of noise to look important and pretend to know what they are doing. The noisy ones are the bullies, the braggarts and the showoffs. They pull us along an empty track to no where.
In reality, they are just empty cars.
Written by Michael T. Smith
Michael is a writer in his spare time and believes in sharing a smile, a wave, a kind word and a tear. He lives with beautiful wife Ginny in Idaho and works as a project manager in telecommunications when he is not writing. His life experiences have given him a special heart that shows in his writing. For Mike's contact details and to subscribe to his free Hearts and Humour newsletter, please visit . . . Positive Inspirational Links >>>
- Inspirational Stories
- Finding a Forever Home
- Grandma's Thimble
- When you thought I wasn't looking
- Left Behind
- Enjoy your nectarine
- The Old Phone . . . How do you spell fix?
- You make a difference
- Lessons from Geese
- The Richest Man in the Valley
- The Making of a Memory
- Why The Elephants Dont Run
- The Sandpiper . . . to bring you joy
- They don't walk in your shoes . . . Click, Click, Click!
- The Happiest Day of My Life
- Courage - Despite the Odds
- You just never know
- Learning to Listen
- If it is meant to be, it will be
- The Learning Tree
- The Red Marbles
- The Weeds of Our Lives
- The Distinct Sound of Purring
- Flowers for the Teacher
- The Red Ribbon
- Santa's Love
- All The Good Things
- Yusuf - He's My Brother
- Extra Good Luck
- Hoo Hoo Fraks
- Stand tall like the Sunflower
- Unique Words of Forgiveness
- I Got Back On My Seat
- Brick Wall
- White Envelopes
- Love and Music in Their Hearts
- Birthday Cards with Secret Codes
- Gift Exchange - lessons about life!
- When the message light doesn't blink
- Tenant Farmers
- I know you by heart
- In Clay Vessels
- Letting Go
- When the nest emptied
- When the birdies came
- Broken Eggs and Shattered Glass
- After the applause, make time for words of praise!
- Are you a bucker filler or a dipper
- Choosing Confidence
- The Stone Soup Story
- A Mother's Job
- Hugging Life
- The Perfect Partnership
- Acknowledging a Special Treat
- A Different Perspective
- Life is meant to be lived
- Treasured Traditions
- Rules for a better way to live
- I Just Get Started
- Memories sustain us on Father's Day
- Creating Opportunity
- Forgiving without condoning or forgetting
- Nothing is long or short, hot or cold, good or bad!
- The Power of Discipline
- Sentry of the Homestead
- You deserve an Academy Award!
- All in the Family
- What is your Passion?
- We danced through life
- A choice to make
- Five ingredients of personal growth
- Acres of Diamonds
- If you look like a duck . . .
- The Secret of Happiness
- Harvesting Love
- It's music to your ears
- A Special Brand of Luck
- They are just empty cars
- Thou Art An Eagle
- Encouragement Works
- When you're in the cement mixer
- Plant Annually
- Life and Its Legs
- No Barriers in Life
- Getting Started
- Good Leaders are Good Followers
- How much do you want it to be
- How to improve your vision
- What forgiveness will buy
- Why let that hold you back
- Letting the yeast work its magic
- 9 things that make good employees quit
- The Beginning of Positive Thinking
- Giving Back
- May you be known by your love
- Expand your vision of possibilities
- We are meant for the skies
- Mr Belser died last night
- Are you dead on the job
- What makes us happy
- Motivating Others
- The clock is running so make the most of today
- Calming the muddy waters
- Keeping New Year's Resolutions - the secret additive
- You are unique
- Web of Love
- Is happiness around the corner
- Seeing Life Through New Eyes
- An enriching action
- The Road to Significance and Success
- The real purpose of your life
- With leadership its the little things that matter
- The Obstacle in our Path
- Good deeds no matter how small can change the world for someone
- Accepting responsibility has its rewards
- An Inspiring Thanksgiving
- The Ever-Flowing Spiral of Love
- Clementine - My Very First Dog
- The Little Nail
- His Greatest Treasure
- Their love comes with no strings and has no boundaries
- Three Simple Words that Change Everything