There IS a Pony In There

2014 Stewardship Testimonial

David Smith

I’m David Smith and I’ve been a UUCA member for 22 years.  Let me say up-front that I feel proud and lucky to be able to increase my pledge for 2014 by more than 10 percent.  I am happy to support UUCA financially because you have given me so much.

I arrived not knowing a soul in this town.  You gave me friendship.  I met a nice lady here, and Rev. John Mackey officiated at our wedding.  We started a family and you gave us a loving, nurturing place where our children felt safe to grow and be themselves. You know, you drag your kids out of bed on Sunday morning and you wonder if they will ever understand what you’re trying to do for them.  Now my girls are coming of age, and it feels so good to realize, yes, they do understand how special this place is.  They get it.  They really do!

You gave me your trust — to teach your children and youth, to serve on your board, to serve on your Senior Minister search committee. The search committee gave me the job of initially researching a certain candidate from Texas.  

And music!  You gave me the opportunity to share music!  Even when more than once it crashed and burned.  Is the music here awesome, or what?  And OMG — signing Spirit of Life with the Phoenix choir in a thousand year old Unitarian church in Transylvania? OM-freakin-G!  You have given me the memories of a lifetime.  Thank you.

But I have to tell you my joy…my smile…has sometimes been a mask.  Masking layers of unhappiness. Last year I made the hardest decision of my life and ended my marriage after 17 years.  It has been difficult.  Early in the process, I had this thought:  “This is a community that has a lot of resources.  Pull UUCA in even closer and UUCA will help you through this.”  And did you ever. You may not know this, but last year our Rev. Makar led a course, “Rebuilding After Your Relationship Ends.”  Eight of us, all UUCA members, all going through divorces, met for three months.  And we helped each other to work through all the stuff; we helped each other start climbing out, and start rebuilding.  Thank you, Anthony. Thank you, UUCA. Your resources made this possible.

You have given me so much.  Let me tell you…you…UUCA…you are not just changing lives, you are saving lives.

Do you remember the joke Rev. Makar told about the optimist and the room of horse manure? Kid is led into a room piled high with horse manure and, being an optimist, the kid joyfully starts digging.”There must be a pony in here somewhere.”  Well, life gave me a pile of horse manure.  You helped me dig. And I am here to tell you — there IS a pony in there!


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