In her post for today Ellen mentioned the book "The Purpose Driven Life" by Rick Warren. Interestingly I had just seen the same book profiled last night on MSNBC. They were doing a piece on Ashley Smith and how she had been able to talk to Brian Nichols and convince him to give himself up without futher harming anyone else. There are a good many folks out there who believe what happened in that apartment during those long frightening hours, was as close to a miracle as you can get. Here was a man who'd already killed four people, and probably would have killed more before either killing himself or being killed by police.
One can only imagine the courage and strength it took for this young woman to stand her ground and talk this man off the path he had set himself upon. At some point Brian Nichols had given up hope. We may never know exactly what he was thinking but it is certain he had no qualms about killing four innocent people. "Ashley Smith is a national hero--a brave, resourceful single mother who has suffered in her life, and who at a series of pivotal moments did the right thing and the kind thing and helped a killer end a killing spree."
When I first heard about this brave young woman, a single mother to a little girl, I immediately thought of our own Faith . I know how she stuggles on a daily basis to keep her life on an even keel. To be the best parent she can to her child, the best daughter she can to her Mother, and the best person she can for all those who love her. Then my thoughts went to Dawn and her stuggles with not only her own health but that of her husband and her father. Of course one can't think of strong women facing almost insurmountable stuggles without thinking of sweet precious Ellen. Ellen, who even as she battles her own health crisis, finds the time and compassion to reach out to others. (Thank you Ellen for that wonderful package, I received it just today!). Then there's Mary Lou . I wonder if she knows how many times those sweet little cards she's sent my way have been just the pick me up I've needed. When it comes to strong, brave women, Brenda would have to be at the top of the list. There is simply no way I could do what that lady does on a daily basis.
Ashley Smith is more than just a hero, she is a prime example of every woman who has stepped up to the plate and met life's challenges with strength, faith, and courage. Women like the ones I've mentioned, women like Phyllis , and CJ , and Barb . Of course I'd be remiss if I did not mention Leslie , who's ability to let go of the past, forgive and look to the future has inspired me on more than one occasion. In fact all the ladies on my blogroll( Desiree,Brook, Tiffany,Traci,Kim, Becky, Canadian Kim, Michelle,Cassie, Sally,Otto,Chenoah,Vegas(what is your real name child?),TW,KB,& Jaye, whew, hopefully I didn't miss anyone) are worthy of mention. For they all exhibit the same character and bravery that the world is admiring in Ms Smith today. I can say in all honesty, ladies YOU are my hero's!
but I've got it all here in my heart....
I can fly higher than an eagle,
so high against the sky,
Thank you, thank you, thank God for you,
the wind beneath my wings. "