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Dr. Earl Reum (1931-2010)
Founder of NAWD, inspiration for student leaders & advisors...

Visit our Earl Reum tribute site at

Earl Reum: Speaker, Educator, Mentor

to watch...

Jim Finnemeyer
NAWD Executive Director

Contact Jim with questions or comments about NAWD at

by Dr. Earl Reum

Sometimes people enter into your life and you know right away that they were meant to be there, mainy to serve some purpose:  to teach you an important lesson, or to help you figure out who you really are or who you want to become.

You never know who these people may be (possibly your roommate, neighbor, co-worker, long lost friend, closest significant other or even a complete stranger) but when you lock eyes with them, you know at that very moment that they will affect your life in some profound way. 

And sometimes things happen to you that may seem horrible, painful and unfair at first, but in reflection you find that without the struggle to overcome those obstacles, you would have never realized your potential, strength, willpower, or heart strength.

Everything happens for a reason. Nothing happens by chance or by employing available good luck.  Illness, injury, love, lost moments of true greatness and sheer stupidity all happen to test your soul’s limits. Without these small tests, whatever they may be, life would be like a smoothly paved, straight, flat road to nowhere. It would be comfortable and safe but dull and utterly pointless. The people you meet who affect your life, your success and mistrials, help to create who you are and who you become. Even negative events can become learning experiences when we handle them right.

Fact is, they are probably the most important/poignant ones. If someone hurts you, betrays you, or breaks your heart, forgive them, for they have helped you learn about trust and the importance of being cautious when you open your heart.  If someone loves you, love them back—and make it unconditional, not only because they love you, but because, in a way, they are teaching you to love and how to open your heart and eyes to the real world.

Make every day count.  Appreciate every moment and take from every event all those truths you can possibly  manage, for you may never be able to experience it again. Talk with people you have never talked with before and this time, actually listen.  Let yourself fall in love, break free and set your sights high. Hold your head aloft because you have earned that right. Instruct yourself to be a great individual and believe in that self, for if you don’t believe in yourself, it will be impossible for others to believe in you. You can make of yourself anything you wish/choose.  Create your destiny and then go out and live it with absolutely no regrets.

And most important - if you LOVE someone tell that person for you do not know what tomorrow may bring. And learn a lesson in life each day that you live. THAT'S THE STORY OF LIFE!

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