Saturday, September 3, 2011

Kenneth Worth: A Life Of Hard Times and Great Blessings

by Cyrus Webb

Author Kenneth Worth and I were connected during the summer of 2008 when he began the marketing campaign for his book HARD TIMES AND GREAT BLESSINGS. I had not heard of him or his book before the email that brought us together, but once I read it in July 2008 it's message was one that I find myself going to time and again. I think we have all had those days when we feel as though nothing is going right. From the moment we get up in the morning to the time we retire to bed, one would think the world has been against us the entire time.

A little dramatic? I would say so. But it doesn't stop us from looking for reasons to feel sorry for ourselves and try and get others to do the same.

If you have been one of those who feels as though the sky is falling on top of you, then HARD TIMES AND GREAT BLESSINGS is a book you need to not only read but memorize.

This autobiography reminds me much of the biblical account concerning the man Job. He was a man who had been greatly blessed and was forced to suffer great loss, but remained true to his faith along the way. Worth has done the same. In writing this book he opened his life up to us and revealed the real life of the man behind the smiles. Here was someone who lived a relatively simply life with his brother and parents, enjoying the simple pleasures of life. One day, though, that was destroyed forever.

Imagine having to deal with the fact that your mother was found to have not only killed your father and then herself, but had been dealing with emotional difficulties for some time. Worth's story is amazing in that he can be the man living next to us that we had no idea what he has gone through because he chooses not to focus on the negative. Instead he looks to the ways he has been blessed instead of the hard times that have befallen him.

This holds true in his relationship with his wife as well. They had been together for decades and had to deal with health issues that didn't divide them but managed to bring them closer together. It is the true definition of love and what a marriage should be about. When they said "Til death do us part' they meant it with their whole being.

Through cancer scares and other ailments, Worth appreciated life enough to know that you can't sweat the small stuff, and he knew that everything except death was the small stuff. He wasn't going to live his life dwelling on the past. There was a future left for him to live.

His brother died in July 2001, yet instead of drowning himself in sorrow Worth chose to reflect on the fact that his brother had dedicated his life to God. I can't help but reflect on what Worth himself had to say about his future in his book: "My life has been full of hard times and great blessings. And though the hard times continue, God also continues to bless me. I'm trying to stick around to enjoy those blessings as much as possible. And I would like to make a difference in other people's lives. That is what this book is all about. It is my statement, my testimony, that God's grace brings blessing in the midst of difficulty. I wouldn't trade my life for anybody's. With God's help I will finish my journey with class."

I had the privilege of interviewing Worth on Conversations LIVE in 2008 and then again in August 2010. About a month later I received an email from his daughter telling me that he had passed away. He was seventy-one years old. At the end of his life Worth suffered with Parkinson's Disease, heart issues and other issues that required quite a large number of pills each day. In spite of all of that he never gave up on offering hope to others.

Now, after hearing just a snippet of what this man had to endure, doesn't it make a great deal of our problems seem quite small in comparison? HARD TIMES AND GREAT BLESSINGS is the story that movies are made of. Sure, it doesn't have the ending that you may want for your hero, but it still give you that feeling of hope in the end.

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