Visit Fridays Inspiration Online - Click Here!
Friday's Inspiration Weekly
The Challenged Life
Life's challenges are not supposed to paralyze you, they're supposed to help you discover who you are.
To be tested is good. The challenged life may be the best therapist.
A life without challenges is like Socrates' unexamined life - not worth living. Yet, coping with life's challenges can be difficult. What are some effective ways of dealing with challenges?


Entreé: What is "Poor?" by Betsy Gallup,

I must have been seven or eight when I asked my grandmother if we were poor.She said no. I am sure many would disagree. At times, I disagree, but looking at it through her eyes, no, we were not poor.

My grandmother grew up poor, and she married poor. When my mother was a child, there were times they had to live in a tent under the trees, picking cotton during the day and sitting around a campfire at night, going from one field to the next to earn a living. And, it wasn't just the adults who picked cotton all day. It was also the children. When it rained, the children were put in the truck to stay dry - or drier, there was a time one of the windows was broken out - while the adults hugged the trees, getting as much shelter as possible.

We always lived in a house. It wasn't the nicest house on the block, but seldom was it the worst either, and it was always clean and well-kept. The wind didn't howl through cracks around the windows, the roof didn't leak, and it wasn't infested with bugs. If it needed a coat of paint, it got painted - maybe in a rainbow of colors, but at least painted.

There were times they had to eat beans and cornbread day after day because that was all they had. If there were weevils in the cornmeal, too bad, it was food. Do you remember Dolly Parton's song "A Coat of Many Colors?" It was one of my grandmother's favorites. It was also how she dressed and she dressed my mother. She would piece fabric scraps together to make coats for them.

We had store-bought coats. They weren't always in fashion, and there was one winter, I remember not wearing a coat, not because I didn't have one, but I hated the one I had. It didn't occur to me that it was because we might be poor that I had such a hideous coat. It was because my grandmother had bizarre tastes, and you didn't turn down what was given to you by her or anyone else. A gift was a gift, and it was to be appreciated.

We always had a balanced meal on the table. There was ice cream or something before bed. If company dropped by unexpectedly, there was always plenty to eat. We had a supply of sewing materials, plenty of books to read, coloring materials, toys, warm covers for the beds, and the utilities were never shut off. If we showed an interest in a new hobby, she would usually come up with the money to fund it. The newspaper was delivered daily, and there was gas in the car.

To say the least, we didn't suffer, at least not greatly.

From my grandmother's perspective, we were not poor. Coming from where she came from, I can see her point.

About the author:


Betsy Gallup is a full-time mother to an 11-year-old son, and infant twins. She has had several articles, essays, and short stories published. Whim is actually short for AtMyWhim. It is the nickname Betsy adopted after divorcing her first husband. The name says it all, her life and the choices she makes are her own and no one else's. She keeps the name as a reminder of that freedom. She is currently writing a non-fiction book under contract for publication, and she has recently procured an agent to represent her first novel, Destiny, a suspense/romance delving into the world of a renowned psychic. With what time she has left, she operates Whim's Place, a showcase for the work of talented writers.


A Second Helping: Inside the Rain by David M. Bailey - Singer, Songwriter, Survivor

I won't pretend that I know the words to say / I couldn't find them if I searched my whole life long / Guess we'll have to settle for the silence in my eyes / and listen to it turn into a song

And the tears of all the angels up in heaven / make a river where you can wash your pain / Even in the middle of the thunder / Don't let go of the love inside the rain

Some might say that you are being tested / Some might say that you're the one to blame / No one has the right to point that finger / Except the One who loves you anyway

And the tears of all the angels up in heaven / make a river where you can wash your pain / Even in the middle of the thunder / Don't let go of the love inside the rain

1000 years from now all that will matter / is how you kept your heart alive so long / Let your soul be baptized every morning / As the silence turns into a song

And the tears of all the angels up in heaven / make a river where you can wash your pain / Even in the middle of the thunder / Don't let go of the love inside the rain

About the author:

David M. Bailey - Singer, songwriter, survivor
David's story is one of tenacious faith and gentle passion.  On July 4, 1996, doctors told David he had a malignant brain tumor and would be dead by Christmas.  David left his corporate career and returned to his first love of songwriting and performing, with a goal of sharing the hope on which his life depended.  Seven years, Eight albums, 39 states and hundreds of concerts later, David, his songs, and his passions are alive and well. Learn more about this extraordinary individual, his talent and his unquenchable courage at

From the Feedback Button

An apology for the lateness of this issue: I have been temporarily relocated to Pensacola, Florida by my employer, and was simply unable to get the newsletter done on time. This next week's challenge is to figure out how to effectively do that while I am away from my own PC.

I want to send a special welcome back to long-time subscriber SpecialConnection (NancyS), who wrote the following, "Wow! What a place to go to work. I've never been there, but have a friend who lived there. I guess it is beautiful. Be careful of the hurricanes and tropical storms."

I just missed Hurricane Billy... Beautiful, but humid. All the wrinkles fell out of my shirt when I went outside the other day.

Click to send your Let me know what you think of this issue of Fridays Inspiration to me right now!  

Feature: Finding the source of the problem

I was on the plane going to Pensacola, sitting next to an engaging young woman. I encouraged her to talk because I wanted to know more about where I was going, and our conversation made the flight most enjoyable. We discussed many things, and eventually found our way to the subject of religion and spirituality. I learned that there are nearly as many church congregations in the south as there are drive-in restaurants. One on every block, just about...

I learned that she is a survivor of breast cancer, and that she has had her share of problems in this life. She tells me she deals with things a bit differently than her sister, even though their upbringing is similar. Her spiritual center has helped her to overcome the worst of the difficulties she has faced, but it is a daily exercise in patience and personal growth. We agree on that, without question.

She described the following, as an example of how people deal may with problems in their life:

"Let's say that I am walking along on a riverbank, and suddenly, a dead body floats down the river. What do I do with it? Why, no sense letting a dead body stink up the place, is there? So I bury it.

"No sooner than I complete the task, another dead body comes along. Then, another, and another.

"So, there I am, busily digging holes and burying bodies. Soon, the bodies begin to pile up. More than I can bury. What do I do now? Just keep burying bodies as quickly as I can? Stop walking along the river??

"Or, walk upstream, and find out where they are coming from, and deal with the problem ;at the source?"

It's a valid question. The example she gave took me back to late 1998, when things were really piling up on me. I couldn't bury the bodies fast enough, and they were beginning to stink up my life. It was time to find out what the problem was. I had too many bodies buried already.

I am grateful I took the time to do so. I didn't know that was what I was doing with my life at that time. But I know when I begin to see things coming at me today, it is not only because I need the challenge of dealing with them effectively. The lessons to be learned in the challenges I face are also found in the source of the problem and how I deal with that.

I have also learned that a walk along the river can be an enjoyable experience, once again.
My mug
  • Michael Rawls, Friday's Inspiration © 2003

Also Highly Recommended: There have been more than 400 visitors to the website - Thank you for your continued support! Over 440 of our partners on the Internet graciously recommend visitors to Friday's Inspiration. Please take time to visit the "Highly Recommended" links below. expert advice! Life coaches, psychologists, motivational speakers, authors and more. Meet our team and ask your questions! Self help, health and fitness,career and business and much, much more. Free information for a lifetime, at!

Your single source for personal growth: provides one of the most complete collections of free newsletters for self-improvement and personal growth on the internet. You can receive free articles, book reviews, motivational quotes and more on topics such as goal setting, time management, stress management, health and fitness. Subscribe today, and don't miss a single issue!  

Brought to you by F.I.'s *Shameless Commerce* Division: (100% of the proceeds from the sales of products and services advertised here will benefit Court Appointed Special Advocates for abused and neglected children - CASA.)

The Veriuni Difference: Discover Veriuni nutritional products consisting of all-natural ingredients, gleaned solely from minerals stored within plants and the earth itself, with no artificial ingredients or preservatives. Veriuni products are easy to swallow and taste great to boot. Go to

Get FREE authentic Tarot Reading

Find out if a home business is right for you!  

The rest of the stuff: Article submission guidelines, Subscription information and Member's List Maintenance

Your suggestions for inspirational topics and inspiring authors are welcome. Guest Authors are encouraged to submit their article to - Article length should be limited to 600 words in any format, and should be on an appropriate subject for our subscribers. Please include a short biography and picture. Absolutely no business or marketing related articles will be accepted.

Friday's Inspiration continues to be visited by inspiration seekers from around the world! Help spread the word about this one-of-a-kind website. You are welcome to invite your friends to join us by recommending this site. They may subscribe by sending a blank email to

We are committed to protecting your privacy, so your email address will NEVER be sold or exchanged. If you would like to unsubscribe from this newsletter, please send a blank email to or visit

Online issues of this newsletter can be found at

Peace and Light,

Sign My Guestbook Get your own FREE Guestbook from htmlGEAR View My Guestbook