ALPINE — Tears come easily to David Candland as he explains the impact a simple act can have on people.
Five years ago, Candland said he felt prompted to visit his neighbor, Bertha Adams, then 99.
“What I call my inner voice said, ‘You need to go sing to her’ and my ego voice said, ‘There’s no way you could do that,” he said.
Eventually Candland and his wife visited Adams, who asked, "Do you still sing?"
He began visiting her weekly, and upped his visits to twice a week as she passed the century mark and kept on going. Each week he sings to her, and to five or seven others.
Candland has a booming voice that he notes is not always on key or tempo, but his sincerity and love shine through. During a recent visit, Adams could be heard singing along softly.
"The quality of the performance itsn’t nearly as important as the fact you’re doing it,” Candland said. “Because I don’t always have the best performance.”
When he finishes, he makes sure to make physical and eye contact with each person and tell them he loves them.
“I think we should tell people what we feel,” he said. “I think that we don’t tell people enough.”
It is not rare for Candland to receive promptings, be they thanking people in grocery stores or letting others know he loves them. Each morning, he prays for opportunities to lift others so he feels a pull to follow what he sees as promptings to bless others' lives.
“What it basically tells me is that our Father in Heaven wants to bring people together for happiness joy and love,” he said.
Part of Candland's motivation is to help other people understand their worth, he said. People's actions throughout their life determine the life's value, he said, and every life has similar potential for greatness.
“My idea is that we should never undervalue who we are because our eternal worth is infinite. It cannot be calculated.”
Although he did not intend to have his story widely known, he hopes his example will inspire others to do the same.
“I would hope that people would learn to look each other in the eye and be happy,” he said.
Contributing: Brooke Walker
Email: firstname.lastname@example.org, Twitter: whitevs7