On Fire#5  Can You Say Yes?  

Comfort is popular, but courage changes lives

This chapter has one of the most powerful stories in it about John’s favorite nurse, Big Roy.  Big Roy was always tender and careful until the day that he gets John up to help him learn to walk.  It hurts and John is furious at him.  He cannot bend his legs.  He cannot put weight on his feet.  He has no muscles.  He does not believe he can walk again.

 Big Roy replies, ” Boy, you are going to walk again.  You might as well get used to it.  Come on.  I’ll walk with you.”  

And Big Roy does and says the same thing day after day after day until one day, John did believe that he might walk again.  This conversation changed his life. John is able to tell Big Roy this at a reunion dinner 24 years later. Big Roy was so blessed to know that he mattered.  He did his job.  He loved his work.  He loved his patients but never really understood that he mattered.  He changed John’s life!  He would never forget him!  

This chapter also includes a story of a visit from Glenn Cunningham, who held the world record for the fastest mile at one point and a silver medal winner of the 1936 Olympics.  

Glenn and John had something in common.  They were both burned as young boys.  Glenn and his older brother were starting a fire in a schoolhouse stove and accidentally used gas rather than kerosene.  That can ignited.  His brother died 9 days later.  Glenn was burned all over.  His legs were burned so badly that the doctors wanted to amputate, but his mom begged and promised he would change the bandages daily.  He learned to walk by learning to stand in the yard next to a fence, with many, many falls he proceeded to walking a few steps holding onto the fence to walking around the whole fence to jogging to running to striding, then races and the Olympics.  

Glen told John to picture himself doing whatever he desired to do and not to give up.  “Never give up.  Never quit.”
This conversation changed John’s life as well.

 So come on, let’s love our work and the people in it.  We matter as well!  Who’s life are we changing?


  • Don’t forget to make a comment about John’s story “On Fire” on my blog on my website.  2 more weeks for “On Fire” book review!  I will enter your name into the drawing for a FREE “On Fire” book!!

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