Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Remembering to Give...Thanks and More!

This Thursday as Americans, we celebrate and hold dear a special day that provides us an opportunity to give thanks; a day to unite with friends and family… a day of peace.

Thanksgiving is uniquely American but the ideals that it embodies are something that all countries and all peoples can embrace.

Our Thanksgiving started humbly in the early 1600’s by English settlers who endured many hardships, having fled from religious persecution.

Not the least of which was an extremely harsh New England winter that killed nearly half the colonists.

The survivors gave thanks to God for their new home, freedom, bountiful harvests and their new Indian friends that embraced them and aided their survival.

Though many Thanksgiving days were celebrated over the years, it wasn’t nationalized until President Abraham Lincoln made it so.

This glorious tradition continues to be held the last Thursday of November.

For many the history has been forgotten. For others it is simply a day to rest from hard work. For others it is an opportunity to see family that they otherwise may not see due to distance or time constraints. For others it is a day of true spiritual connectedness and gratitude to a loving God. And to others it is a day of peace and tranquility as all pause for a moment in time. Still others use it as a day to serve and give to those less fortunate and in need of help.

Those of us who “have” … can share… can give… can serve and… can pray for those who have not.

My sincerest wish is for all of the inhabitants of this planet to experience an abundance of love, health and wealth.

While this day is uniquely American, I hope that its message can be adopted and embraced by the world. A planetary day of Thanksgiving!

And yes, I know there are countless people who would find it extremely hard to be thankful or grateful even for one day.

I pray that even the poorest of people can locate one thing to be thankful for. To be able to say…thank God, I have this shelter, or my family, or my body, my eyesight, my hand or whatever it may be. To acknowledge this to their friends, family, God or just to their inner self is powerful.

Without even one thing to be thankful for, there is no hope. But if there is just one thing to be thankful for, a person’s spirit can be elevated!

A new attitude is adopted energy creates more energy and then self worth and inspiration dispel despair. Suddenly, magically, the doors are flung open for goodness of all kinds to enter into their life.

As their attraction increases, life becomes more fulfilling.
While I firmly believe thanksgiving and gratitude should be practiced daily, especially remember it this Thursday.

This Thanksgiving holiday see who you can give to. Challenge yourself to do a little extra even if you think you’ve done enough.

You will find that you open yourself to receive more by being and doing more for others. The giver is always blessed with reward.

For the last fifteen years at my office we have collected food for the needy families in East Fort Bend County. It’s been a huge success thanks to the generosity of my patients and it’s been a blessing to my patients, community and myself. We love every minute of it. This is just one example.

Do your own thing. Be inspired! Inspire others!

Count your blessings. I’m definitely counting mine!

Every one of you helps me to grow and challenges me to be better.

I am thankful for each and every person in my life.

With sincerest gratitude—thank you!
Dr. Rick Barrett

P.S. Joe Vitale and I are still giving away Give to Live e-books for free at www.givetolivebook.com. For those who purchase books, we are also giving away partial proceeds to our charities like Rudy and the stoves www.missionsofhope.com and Joe’s homeless project—Operation YES www.operationyes.com

I love when people call, e-mail or write to me that Give to Live has changed their life and that they are buying books for family and friends.

One of my patients humbled me the other day by buying books for his seven children. But not only that, he has committed himself to do more for our community and the world. Soon, he will be going on a medical mission with me as part of his commitment. This is from a man who is already very giving. I am grateful to him and others who do their little piece to benefit mankind. It helps us all.
Thanks again to all of you!

P.P.S. For a fun and simple way of opening your life up for more abundance and prosperity to flow Give Away A Dollar A Day! It's just like it sounds - you give away one dollar, every day. The best way to do this is anonymously, and in a public place. But what really makes this practice so genuine and empowering is that you decide where and how to give away your dollar to whomever and however you want. Check out Todd Silva’s website at http://giveawayadollaraday.com

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

T.V. Interview

Joy In Our Town is a segment hosted by Genet Chenier of KETH-TV 14 in Houston, Texas. I spent a few very enjoyable hours at the station being interviewed by Genet. The topic was "back pain". Genet is very gracious and the interview went great.

In fact, they've invited me back in January with the intention of doing a longer segment on our book, Give to Live and the mission work I participate in. I'll let you know when that takes place. In the meantime, watch the Back Pain program. The air dates and time for Joy In Our Time are:

December 7, 2009 10:30 a.m.CST
December 8, 2009 2:30 a.m.CST
December 10, 2009 2:30 a.m.CST
December 11, 2009 12:00 p.m.CST
December 12, 2009 2:30 a.m.CST


Serving You,
Dr. Rick Barrett

P.S. I've also attached a couple of photos from the River Oaks Bookstore book signing!

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Pleasing Pacaya

Who or what is Pacaya? Pacaya is one of three active volcanoes in the Antigua area of Guatemala and gives a beautiful display of lava for all who get close enough to see.

I was privileged to have hiked Pacaya one night last week and I'm sure I could see Pacaya smiling at us.

Indeed if there is a Pacaya god, she must be very pleased with the group of people who visited her and provided medical care to her people.

At least I hope so.

I and a group of fellow medical missionaries just returned from spending one week amongst the beautiful people of Guatemala.

We provided chiropractic, acupuncture, dental and medical care to over 600 people a day in the towns of San Andres Ozuna, Guanagazapa, and Escuintla.

The region has over twenty different Indian groups all with their own language.

Two that I can remember are Cakchiquel and Mam. Many of the people only spoke their native tongue so English to Spanish to Indio translation was often needed. But it all worked well.

In San Andres Ozuna, I treated a very colorfully dressed Mam Indio husband and wife. Pedro Jeronimo Lorezo was his name. They both wore the traditional garments of their people.

Pedro translated for me as his wife only spoke Mam.

May you ch (spelled phonetically) is the Mam word for relax. Pedro taught me this to help his wife be at ease as I treated her.

Chinkotano and Oosh te neek are a few other words in different Indio languages that I was able to put to good use that week.

It was a beautiful experience and they had fun listening to me attempt to speak their language. Just a slight change in emphasis or inflection apparently is important.

After a dozen or so times repeating the words, they figured I was as good as I was going to be.

While we laughed and had fun with it, I could also tell that their was a genuine appreciation for attempting to connect to them in their own language.

This appreciation can be felt in words, gestures and actions amongst all the people.

We and they know we have limited resources and ability to provide all the medical care they need.

But I believe that we do change lives forever. Theirs and ours.

It's questionable who receives the greatest rewards. I would suggest, likely, it's us--the caregivers.

As our lives intertwine for a mere moment in time a genuine and lasting connection is formed. I suppose only God can judge the extent of benefit to those involved.

In any case, as always, I wouldn't trade the experience.

Though each mission trip has an overall sameness to it, there still is a newness, and uniqueness to each trip.

It's hard to explain to someone who hasn't experienced it. But there is a richness that comes from the ingredients of a different area, the spirit and personality of the individuals, the environment, the weather, new medical team members, these and other elements that all combine to make beautifully rich and rewarding mission experiences.

In Spanish, the term, "Que Rico" comes to mind. They say this when a food or an experience is fully enjoyed. What richness it brings!

To our team, I am always indebted. The friendships and commaradie are priceless.

To the people of Guatemala, the Mams, the Cakchiquels and others, I am thankful, grateful and honored to have been allowed to be a part of their lives.

I invite you to view our photos from Guatemala Mission 2009.

Go to http://secure.smilebox.com/ecom/openTheBox?sendevent=4d5449794e444d784e44453d0d0a&blogview=true&campaign=blog_instructions_directurl_makeyourown

If you have an interest in joining or supporting our mission work please visit www.missionsofhope.com

Thank You!
Dr. Rick Barrett