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TEENS FOR KIDS

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Teens For Kids Stories
Click on the story titles below to read these teens real stories.
  Believe in Yourself - Luke
  Peer Pressure - Nicole
  Sharing Your Gifts - Dave
  Get Ready for High School - Ryan
  True Friendship - Stephanie
  Mean Girls - Becky
  Peer Pressure & Drugs - Sammy
  Time for Yourself & God - Cameron
  God in My Life - Matt
  Self Esteem & Respect - Lindsey
  The Power of Family - Kauri
  Doing Fun Things / Volunteering - Dylan
Be Heard!
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advice@dadsforkids.org
 
"Always be a FIRST-RATE VERSION of yourself, instead of a second-rate version of somebody else!"
-Judy Garland
 
Sharing Your Gifts & Being Your Best, by Dave
Lucky enough I am a senior at Trinity Catholic High School, and I only have about 10 days of school left before the finals of my last year in high school. I'm almost there, I've almost made it, and whatever happens I know I will be success, but it wasn't a walk in the park to get to where I am today. Just like you guys sitting out there, I too went through the tough times in middle school, and although for some, it may seem like it can't get any worse, the even tougher times are at high school. And to top it all off when I was entering high school, I had to do it with all new faces, and none of the familiar and comforting voices I had always had growing up, little did I know how much I would need those voices in the future.
Hi, I'm Dave and as I said I am a senior at Trinity Catholic in Stamford, and I tonight am going to be talking to you guys about two very important topics you face growing up.
First, I will talk about sharing your gifts. Every one of you in this room has special and unique gifts, which God has blessed us with, and all he wants in return is that we share our gifts with the rest of the world. Growing up for me was an incredibly tough time, it seemed like all my friends were so busy trying to fit in with the "cool crowd," that they had stopped being themselves. What bothered me was that with the kids putting so much effort into fitting in and not being themselves, it seemed like as if they were forgetting who they used to be. They forgot the little kid who loved to watch Disney movies, or the one who used to laugh at all the stupid corny jokes, and now were getting lost in the new questions of who can I hangout with that will make me look the coolest, or who could I make a joke about that would make everyone laugh. Although comedy, and humor is definitely a gift from God, using it the wrong way could be a curse. You see a gift from God is given to us to give some sort of pleasure to other people, in a form of grace. As I'm sure many of you know, it's not always easy, and believe me I can second that notion.
Sometimes you just need the comfort and push of someone you love or trust to back you up. To tell a quick story, growing up as many of you might already know I loved to play basketball, which is one of my gifts, but unfortunately that is all many people saw me as, but what people didn't know was that I also loved to sing, and was pretty good at it. This was one of my gifts from God that I had never really shared with many people up until then. Year after year in the middle school the people who did know of my gift would tell me to do the talent show, but I never had the courage to stand up in front of my classmates. "What if they think I'm bad, what if they laugh at me," were some of the thoughts going through my mind. Then in eighth grade my good friend Lucas and I were talking and decided that we should do it. We decided that we should sing a song and dedicate it to our good friend who had passed away that same year. Now Lucas had always been a very outgoing confident kid, which was one of his gifts, but me on the other hand, lets just say I would rather just blend in, which was sometimes hard because I was normally head and shoulders taller than everyone, but this was why it was a very difficult thing for me to bring myself to do. But when I got on stage and made the dedication, I knew that it was my time to share my gift along with Lucas and Erica to everyone there that night, and we did it. After the show parents came up to us crying and telling us how amazing we were, and how much it touched them, and still to this day I remember the emotional reactions we got just from singing a few words written on paper.
You see that's what's so great about sharing your gifts. You never know when something that you find very trivial could mean the world to someone else, and even if you only touch one persons life, that is all that matters, and that is what we here tonight are trying to get across.
On a secondary note, I just quickly want to share a few of my views on being your best. As a young kid growing up, you are involved in a lot of activities, whether it be multiple sports, a musical instrument, singing, theatre, or any of the many extra curricular activities available to you.
When you join one of these activities, I'm sure that a lot of you guys started because your friends were doing it, or your parents made you, but for whatever reason you have to make sure you always do your best. Think about when you are involved with something that you really are passionate for….. You know how no matter what mood your in, when you get out there and put your all into it, you seemed to be focused only on that thing at that moment, and everything else seems to go away. That's the effort you need to put into the things your obligated to do as well, even though it might not be easy it is a part of growing up, and something that I am still learning with each and every day. Because truly it is habitual, and once you start putting your all into things, just by habit, you will start putting your all into everything.
Now I am going to share a poem with you all about habit. The Power of Habit.
All you have to do is take control over everything you do and be your best at it, and it will become a way of life. My father once told me "with as hard as I work at basketball, if I only put half that effort into my schoolwork, I would be a success", but I'm not the type to only do half the job, and that is why as well as all of my accomplishments I have achieved in basketball, I also maintained high honors in school. You never want to live your life saying what if, but you will never know how good you could be at something if you don't try your best.
By linking all of the inspirational talks together and sharing them in a caring way, our hope is that you middle schoolers will reflect on what you hear, and decide what is best for you before making tough decisions. Life is all about being your best and making good choices. I truly wish a program like this was available when I was growing up."
On a closing note, I just want to say that by sharing your gifts, being your best and overcoming your fears, I will promise you this……You will have lived your life, and no matter what, you will be a success in the eyes of God. In the end that is all that really matters.