It’s All Good: Love, Light, and Pizza

So…what a week last week was here in the United States.

Horrified, I watched scenes play out on television I would never have thought could happen in this country.

People on both sides of the political divide are angry, scared, and anxious.

I thought we could all use a little good news, so I collected three feel-good stories I would like to share with you today. We need reminders that there is light, love, and selflessness in the world.

Photo by Pixabay on
Doctor Forgives Cancer Patients’ Debt

Most insurance plans cover big-ticket expenses for medical treatment. Many families, especially those living from paycheck to paycheck, however, cannot afford to pay high deductibles and co-pays.

Cancer treatments are often exceptionally costly.

Dr. Omar Atiq, a medical oncologist, ran a cancer clinic in Pine Bluff, Arkansas for nearly 30 years. When his clinic closed in March due to the pandemic, Dr. Atiq decided to close the clinic for good, rather than trying to reopen.

200 of his former patients got an early Christmas present this year when they received a note from Dr. Atiq telling them he was forgiving nearly $650,000 in debt. The good doctor forgave all of these patients’ entire debt.

Dr. Atiq and his wife Mahreen are the parents of four children, all of whom are either doctors or studying to be doctors. What an inspirational example they have set for their sons and daughter.

Photo by Daria Shevtsova on
Charity Pizza

Ben Berman is a 27-year-old graduate student at the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia.

When the pandemic hit in March, Ben got to work. He installed a pulley system in his second-floor apartment and began making pizzas.

From his window, he would lower slices of his culinary masterpieces to friends standing on the sidewalk below to help raise their spirits.

His pizzas soon became hugely popular, and requests for them grew. He began asking his friends to donate some money for ingredients, which he donated to charities that addressed food insecurity and homelessness.

He eventually formed a non-profit organization, Good Pizza PHL, which has raised and donated $30,000 so far.

Ben attributes his love of food and cooking to his mom, about whom he says this: “My mom, who’s an amazing cook, taught me about food as a love language and a driving force to connect people.

Encouragement from an Olympian

I dare you to watch the YouTube video pictured above without crying. This one gets to me. Every. Single. Time.

Blake Leeper, a double-amputee, is a Paralympic athlete from the U.S. He has won numerous awards and is the holder of several American and World running records.

Blake, who hails from Tennessee, has worn prosthetics since he was nine months old. Growing up, he participated in many sports including baseball and basketball under the tutelage of his dad.

When Blake was at Scott Sabolich Prosthetics & Research Center recently getting fitted for his new prosthetic running blades, he encountered two-year-old KJ Dyer. KJ was attempting to walk on his prosthesis for the first time with the help of a walker.

The viral video shows Leeper encouraging Dyer.

Blake has temporarily interrupted his pre-med studies to devote his energies to his spectacular running career. I hope at some point he returns to realize his dream of becoming a doctor.

And there you have it – some good news.

I leave you with this quote from Philippians: “Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things.

You can find the places I link up here.


  1. Laurie, I saw the story of the little boy on the news when it aired. It was amazing as are all these stories! Thank you for sharing “feel good stories” as we all could use one now and again!

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Thank you, Laurie, for being such a bright spot!! These three stories all are beautiful and demonstrate the true goodness in people. I especially love that Bible passage; it’s one I draw on repeatedly during tough & ugly times.

    Liked by 2 people

  3. I just wrote about pizza, so imagine my surprise to see your post with this title! Of course your post is all about doing good for others, while mine is about grumbling about my failings. Be that as it may, I have seen this video of the interaction between Olympian and two-year old child, and it is touching. I like the Bible verse. A good thought for our times.

    Liked by 2 people

  4. Laurie, these are all beautiful stories! I’m so glad that I got to visit with you today because it’s so wonderful to be able to see and focus on the positive things that are still happening in the world even amongst all of the chaos. Thanks so much for sharing! Blessings to you! 😊

    Liked by 2 people

  5. Wow where do you find these stories! In my training I worked for a year in a hospital, so I am used to stories like this. Am glad you said “…on both sides.” You have a more neutral view than some journalists! Have you heard about Flashpoint with Gene Bailey (Youtube and Worth a visit:) Jesh

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  6. Hi Laurie, I want to start with Happy New Year, yet, so far this is a hopeful thought and setting an intention in the right direction. I greatly appreciate β€œlight, love, and selflessness….” especially right now. I had read about Dr. Atiq and his kind, generosity. The pizza story is new to me. Thank you for sharing this beautiful quote from Philippians.

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  7. Thank you! We need more posts like this, sharing good news! I’ve switched off from reading the news because it only makes me miserable, I follow important updates but only to know what’s happening, and that’s enough. I’ve been looking for places online to find positive news but don’t know how! Thanks for sharing this, it made my day.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Such lovely stories. I think we all need uplifting in times like these.
    Thanks so much for sharing with #MMBC. Enjoy the rest of your weekend and stay safe. πŸ™‚

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  9. Hi Laurie,
    This may well be the first time we’ve met. I’m an old timer with the Coffee Share group and suspect you found us via Natalie, our new host. I wanted to both welcome you to our weekend visits and thank you for sharing some good news. It has been a rough way to end a year, but there are great stories out there, good news still to be found and encouragement to be shared. Can I share one back to you since you clearly appreciate such inspiration. This story happened to me. I was part of it to be sure, but the people who pulled this off . . . their story warms me every time I revisit it. It’s short, but if you know anyone who has been through breast cancer it may leave you with tears of joy. The story is good, but having been there and then trying to write about it was like trying to capture a whole vista with a small lens camera. Here’s the link and regardless of whether you read it or not, you are very welcome to our weekend coffee share.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Hi Gary,
      Yes, you are right. I found you via Natalie’s Coffee Share group. This was the first time I linked up. Thank you for the warm welcome. I was happy to be able to share some good news this week. I think everyone needs it right about now. Thank you for sending the link. I will check it out right now. I love feel-good stories!

      Liked by 1 person

  10. Great post Laurie! There are many amazing people out there who show God’s love, concern & hope through their kindness & altruism, many don’t even realize it’s from God! But all good things come from God πŸ˜‰
    Thank you for sharing those beautiful stories today.

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    • Thank you, Jennifer! We must search out those who share God’s love for recognition. It is easy to become anxious with all the bad news around – especially in the US! Blessings to you.

      Liked by 1 person

  11. Thank you for your injection of goodness into our day Laurie. The story with Blake and KJ moved me as well. Blake, a much better soul than ol’ Oscar Pistorious, though they have the same claim to fame (sports-wise anyway). I liked the pizza drop story too. πŸ™‚ My mom had a hip replacement in 1981 … the stem came loose and she had to have what is known as a “revision” (replacement of the original prosthesis in 1990). Her surgeon for the 1981 surgery left Michigan shortly thereafter. He went to South Carolina to open up a clinic for poor people who had orthopedic injuries, but could not afford healthcare. He did the surgeries for them, donating his time to the hospital. I thought he was exceptional – your story is much more heartwarming.

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    • I was so glad to be able to share some good news, Linda. We all need it right now. I thought of Oscar Pistorious too when I read about Blake. No comparison! Except in running,. I guess. Your mom’s surgeon sounds like a great guy. I am sure he could have made more money doing something else, but money is not everything!

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      • We sure do need good news Laurie. I never had watched the Special Olympics before, so I never saw the special prosthetics for running before Oscar Pistorious’ legal problems were splashed all over the news. You are correct – no comparison, as to character anyway. He was a wonderful doctor and we were sorry to see him go and he was not that old, maybe 50s when he left Michigan for a new start.

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  12. Hi Laurie,
    Thanks for reminding me about what’s going on in the US atm. I live in Australia and it’s pretty mellow here atm. We’re on Summer holidays and the whole nation tends to switch off in January. While it’s great to zone out, I do like to remember what’s going on in the world beyond our four walls. I have two teenagers and I’ve also been focused on them and trying to get them sorted out for the new year…along with myself and the house. Just keeping the home front operational is a huge effort before I even consider the political realm. Our kids have gone away to camp for a few days and we’re going to spend some time together and go out for dinner. It all kicked off before they left yesterday with a great beach and rock walk.
    Take care!
    Best wishes,

    Liked by 3 people

    • Rowena, count your blessings. Your government handled the pandemic so much better than ours did. It is terrible here right now! Have fun spending time together while your kids are away at camp. I remember the days when my hubby and I would love it when we got a few days to ourselves! πŸ™‚

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      • Thanks so much, Laurie. We had lunch out yesterday, but then child 2 called from camp and I ended up picking her up early. It was her second camp this week and I think she was too tired and one by one the teenagers started going home. Such a pity, but she’ll be happy at home and has the beach down the street.

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  13. Wow, thanks for sharing these! Sometimes I get sucked into the news and just need a break, especially after the events of these last weeks and this last year. These stories are great!

    Liked by 3 people

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