Beliefs

There are kindhearted people. I have seen them. I have shaken their hands, hugged their necks. To find them, you have to know where to look, but they’re around.

DEAR SEAN:

What things do you believe in?

ELEVEN-YEARS-OLD-IN-CHAPEL-HILL

DEAR ELEVEN:

I believe in fried chicken. The kind made by every granny you’ve ever known. The kind fried in black iron skillets.

I believe it is powerful stuff. Which is probably why you see it at funeral receptions, baby showers, and churches.

I also believe in hand-rolled biscuits made from flour, fat, salt, baking powder, and buttermilk. To add additional ingredients to this mix would be like drawing a mustache on the Mona Lisa.

I believe in teaching young men to clean fish. I believe in kids who ask too many questions. And I believe in girls who are gutsy enough to be themselves.

I believe girls have it harder than boys. And I’m sorry for that.

I believe in giving money to the homeless—not once or twice, but every time I see someone down on their luck. Every single time. I believe in giving more than I should.

I believe in old-time country dances. Long ago, before TV’s, smartphones, and twenty-four-hour news channels, I believe people threw more parties.

I believe in bowing heads to say grace. I believe in crickets, loud frogs, and places where you cannot hear busy highways.

I believe in magic tricks. And in teenagers who haven’t found themselves yet. I believe in all golden retrievers, Labs, bloodhounds, some Jack Russels. And marriage.

I believe in Marie, Lorena, and Nadia—living at a battered women’s shelter in South Georgia. I believe in high-school dropouts, and kids who miss their daddies. I believe in nurses.

I believe in music made by hand, fiddles, upright pianos, and the poetry of Hank Williams. I believe in Willie Nelson.

I believe in the memory of grandparents, and keeping them alive with stories. I believe in making lowly people famous, and famous people lowly.

And I believe this world is better than most give it credit. I believe that if folks truly knew how much good there was, they would quit hurting each other.

There are kindhearted people. I have seen them. I have shaken their hands, hugged their necks. To find them, you have to know where to look, but they’re around.

They are the sort who attend funerals for those they barely knew. Who stand in maternity wards, looking at newborns through glass windows.

They are the kind who stop cars to help strangers change tires. They are big tippers, self-effacers, shower-singers, and casserole makers.

And I believe in them.

I believe in the old woman I once knew, who said: “If you REALLY wanna love someone, give’em something good to eat.”

Granny. I believe in the wisdom of sweet women, weather-worn, wrinkled, solemn ladies who know their ways around skillets. Who kiss cheeks with dry lips, who make the world sunny by dusting counters with flour.

I believe in the power of their sugar. In their fried chicken. In the oil of their love. And I believe they are about as close to God as you can get, here on earth.

Above all, I believe that our beliefs don’t amount to much when it’s all said and done.

It’s what we do that counts.

29 comments

  1. Pamela McEachern - October 31, 2018 6:44 am

    I believe actions are the strongest ways we can show our love and dedication to all things that are important to us. I loved every sentence today!

    Peace and Love from Birmingham

    Reply
  2. Nancy Rogers - October 31, 2018 9:06 am

    Tell it Sean, tell it.

    Reply
  3. Jean - October 31, 2018 10:11 am

    Well said……well said!

    Reply
  4. Toni Tucker Locke - October 31, 2018 11:20 am

    Thank you ALWAYS, Sean, for reminding us of the good when the bad is what permeates the news feeds!

    Reply
  5. Janet Gray - October 31, 2018 11:25 am

    I believe that God has truely blessed me with a wonderful family and friends. I believe my old iron skillet will fry some more chicken for my grown children and grandsons. I believe the wooden bowl will yield a few more cathead biscuits to go with the peas from my garden. I believe my newly planted fruit trees will grow. I believe my recent move from central Florida to Southeast Georgia was the right move but most of all I believe that you Sean are inspiring more people than you will ever know.

    Reply
  6. Leia Lona - October 31, 2018 11:30 am

    I couldn’t agree more.

    Reply
  7. Connie - October 31, 2018 12:25 pm

    I believe The last line says it All! 💗

    Reply
  8. Connie Havard Ryland - October 31, 2018 12:48 pm

    Absolutely stellar. Love and hugs from southern Alabama.

    Reply
    • Sandy Smith - October 31, 2018 6:57 pm

      I’d bet $ we are kinfolk !

      Reply
  9. Patricia Schmaltz - October 31, 2018 1:10 pm

    I believe I love you Sean Dietrich. Thank you kindly.

    Reply
  10. Keloth Anne - October 31, 2018 1:33 pm

    Amen!! Words without actions are useless. One of my favorite church signs (I love church signs) “Your life may be the only Bible a person may read.”
    Thank you for your daily shares 💛

    Reply
  11. Bobbie - October 31, 2018 1:35 pm

    Amen!

    Reply
  12. Judy - October 31, 2018 1:40 pm

    Amen!

    Reply
  13. Susie - October 31, 2018 2:11 pm

    Amen, Yes, Love, showing and giving.

    Reply
  14. Tara Spain - October 31, 2018 2:44 pm

    Love, love, love this! Your writing is awesome, please keep it up. Your email I receive every morning brings a smile to my face and hope and joy to my heart and soul! Thank you, Sean. Love and blessings from West Tennessee.

    Reply
  15. Pat - October 31, 2018 2:46 pm

    Totally agree. Mama always said that talk is cheap and don’t believe everything you hear but watch what people DO! I’ve heard it said that the true measure of a person is what they do when no one is watching…AND, it ain’t charity if you gotta brag about it!

    Reply
  16. Edna B. - October 31, 2018 3:39 pm

    Well said, Sean. I believe too. You have a wonderful day, hugs, Edna B.

    Reply
  17. Brenda McLaine - October 31, 2018 4:02 pm

    We must be related. I believe in the same things you do!

    Reply
  18. Jo B. COOPER - October 31, 2018 4:11 pm

    So well said

    Reply
  19. Shelton Armour - October 31, 2018 6:58 pm

    Faith without action is dead. I believe that. You write things that make me think, I believe that. You’re a good man and a good person. If you come to Jax, FL let me know. I’d like to come and hear you.

    Reply
  20. Sandra Smith - October 31, 2018 6:59 pm

    I’d only add one thing….I believe in Veteran’s and anyone of the Greatest Generation.

    Reply
  21. Dot - October 31, 2018 7:40 pm

    I BELIEVE!!!!!!

    Reply
  22. Mike McSwain - November 1, 2018 1:02 am

    I believe in those things too! thank you for writing as you do! it actually helps me each day as I read your post!

    Reply
  23. Carol Pepper - November 1, 2018 4:14 am

    Simply Beautiful!! There are no bertter words than these!

    Reply
  24. Penn Wells - November 1, 2018 4:58 am

    I believe in Sean Dietrich.

    Or, as my grandson said the other day, “I believe in belief.” He’s too young to know who Yogi was, so I’m pretty sure he came up with that one on his own. Pretty nifty.

    Reply
  25. Carol - November 1, 2018 1:06 pm

    I believe and trust in the Lord!!
    Thank you Sean. For I know you do too!
    Love ya!

    Reply
  26. Robert Chiles - November 1, 2018 11:12 pm

    Preach it!!!!

    Reply
  27. Kristine Wehrheim - November 2, 2018 11:43 am

    I believe you are right!

    Reply
  28. anne trawick - November 5, 2018 12:26 am

    For a long time I kept every post you wrote. Then I started running short of memory and I had to get selective. This one is definitely a keeper.

    Reply

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