March 2024


and starting his own roofing business—Barr Roofing Co.—which launched last year and is incredibly inspiring to me. By the end of our year meeting together, I truly saw him as the father figure I never had. A month after being hired at Heritage, another incredible opportunity arose. A family friend since childhood, Kara Humphrey, reached out to me one day and asked if I wanted to have my own monthly article in Texarkana Magazine . HUH? I didn’t want to miss out on the incredible new journey Cassy Meisenheimer was going to take when jump-starting this magazine, but I was also TERRIFIED to say yes! At the time, I was writing lengthy Facebook posts but not full-on articles! What if I’m terrible? What if I can’t consistently think of good stuff to write about? What if I try too hard and the writing suffers because of it? Kara, who has known me since I was a baby in the nursery at Church on the Rock, never saw me as my fears and doubts. She had already seen me through so many highs and lows in my life; she knew I had a unique perspective to share, and above all, she believed in me when I doubted myself. That’s the kind of person we all need! Kara not only edits my stories each month but has also helped me become a better writer. She is always going to be that genuine friend who will be empathetic, loving, and caring, but she IS going to point you back to what you know the truth is—not PUSH you there, POINT you there. In my case, Kara has always pointed me back to Jesus and reminded me of my identity in Him. I don’t know where I would be today without calling her at random moments of the day to spill my guts out to her. She is always available to listen and help guide me. She is love, light, wisdom, and a gentle little nudge of the truth embodied. Everyone needs a Kara! During all these scary life changes, I was also reconnecting with one of my dearest friends whom I met all the way back in 2016 through church. Sharmonique Manning is one of the most ambitious, driven women I’ve ever met in my life. Her fire for Jesus allows her to know no bounds and, because of that, she is completely fearless. Sharmonique teaching me fearlessness doesn’t mean never being afraid at all. It is diving in headfirst and doing everything that scares you anyway, regardless of whether


H aving those people in our lives who see something special in us when we really don’t even see it in ourselves can be life changing. I have written a handful of articles about those who have yanked the best out of me in my personal life: my mom, Ali Deal, and other family members. But I haven’t really written about those who have mentored, fostered, and nurtured my strengths in my professional life. While I’d hardly consider myself some highly successful businessman, I have found myself in professional positions I never could have imagined I would be in five years ago. These opportunities stemmed from simply being willing to sit and learn under those who know more than me, while simultaneously choking down the hard-to- swallow pill that growth cannot exist inside of our comfort zones. My career journey began at Heritage Home Health and Hospice in 2020, where I started in a role that involved engaging with our community. Brian Barr, Director of

Business Development, noticed my knack for social media through the occasional posts I made on our Facebook page. He envisioned the growth potential with me as the head of our social media efforts, ignoring that I had no prior experience in this role. From there, Brian asked to meet with me on a weekly basis so he could mentor me through this transition into my new role. However, when you’re meeting for an hour on a weekly basis, you’re going to have a lot more to talk about than just business. Yes, Brian gave me invaluable work-related wisdom, but he was also a spiritual advisor to me. He taught me what he has learned in his personal relationship with Jesus Christ, shared his own successes and failures in life, walked me through a difficult time in my personal life, and took me under his wing, teaching me the Biblical definition of what a true man is. He talked me out of my fear and hesitation about stepping into my new position, and I am eternally grateful for the time and energy he invested in me. He did all this while being a father, husband, director,



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