In Memory of Jim Woodworth

A special column on another person who was a key influence to one of the creators of this site. (12/8/09)

Receiving more than I ever thought I would
By, Ezra Mann
When many look back at the timeline of their lives it seems that the easiest part was often growing up. For many, the trials and tribulations of adulthood far outweigh anything a child or teenager may experience along the pathway.
After all, there are wars to be fought, bills to be paid and raising said youngsters so they too can one day think about how easy it was. Then again, if it really were that much of a breeze there would be a far greater number of those who had a reason to become the older generation. Thankfully, there are a few who understand this truth and embrace it with a youthful wonder.
One of those individuals that helped me make the effort to press on was a kind man known as Jim Woodworth. Were it not for caring individuals such as these, I might not even be here today.
I can say without a doubt that there have been and will continue to be children who have a much worse deal than I did reaching adulthood in Lubbock Texas. However, even in an environment with both a mother and father present as well as everything I needed from them provided, there were still times in that period where I might have let my troubles overcome me. Jim came at perhaps one of my most critical junctures.
Depression is an easy route to take, especially when one struggles to be a part of a one size fits all learning atmosphere. Some of us simply pick up on things in ways that set us apart and in a river of those who told me I was not meant to be equal with my peers; Jim listened and knew I was meant for taking another route.
I felt like an outcast everywhere I went; he made me feel like I had a home. I wanted to scream at those that hurt me and made me feel like less of a person, he brought calm with reason. The Lord God was behind the works of Mr. Woodworth and that is part of what saved me.
Even though I may not realize it in the heat of moments to this day, those like Jim give me a reason to remain upon this earth. What greater insult it would be than to throw away the foundation that was not built upon sand.
Jim Woodworth may not be among us right now, but he continues to offer his guidance in ways that we can never cease to be proud of. I will miss him not just because he was a gentle soul in the painful periods I’ve known so far, but because he was as much a family member as even those of my own blood. Now that you know peace we all will have more of it in our hearts.
Column also published on Sir Spamalot's Xanga

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