Life is a gift

There was a blind girl who hated herself just because she was blind. She hated everyone, except her loving boyfriend. He was always there for her. She said that if she could only see the world, she would marry her boyfriend.

        One day, someone donated a pair of eyes to her and then she could see everything, including her boyfriend. Her boyfriend asked her, “Now that you can see the world, will you marry me?”

        The girl was shocked when she saw that her boyfriend was blind too, and refused to marry him. Her boyfriend walked away in tears, and later wrote a letter to her saying:

        “Just take care of my eyes dear.”

        This is how human brain changes when the status changed. Only few remember what life was before, and who’s always been there even in the most painful situations.

        Life Is A Gift

        Today before you think of saying an unkind word–
        think of someone who can’t speak.

        Before you complain about the taste of your food–
        think of someone who has nothing to eat.

        Before you complain about your husband or wife–
        think of someone who is crying out to God for a companion.

        Today before you complain about life–
        think of someone who went too early to heaven.

        Before you complain about your children–
        think of someone who desires children but they’re barren.

        Before you argue about your dirty house, someone didn’t clean or sweep–
        think of the people who are living in the streets.

        Before whining about the distance you drive–
        think of someone who walks the same distance with their feet.

        And when you are tired and complain about your job–
        think of the unemployed, the disabled and those who wished they had your job.

        But before you think of pointing the finger or condemning another–
        remember that not one of us are without sin and we all answer to one maker.

        And when depressing thoughts seem to get you down–
        put a smile on your face and thank God you’re alive and still around.

        Life is a gift – Live it, Enjoy it, Celebrate it, and Fulfill it.

Hospital Window

Two men, both seriously ill, occupied the same hospital room. One man was allowed to sit up in his bed for an hour each afternoon to help drain the fluid from his lungs. His bed was next to the room’s only window. The other man had to spend all his time flat on his back. The men talked for hours on end. They spoke of their wives and families, their homes, their jobs, their involvement in the military service, where they had been on vacation.

        Every afternoon when the man in the bed by the window could sit up, he would pass the time by describing to his roommate all the things he could see outside the window.

        The man in the other bed began to live for those one hour periods where his world would be broadened and enlivened by all the activity and color of the world outside.

        The window overlooked a park with a lovely lake. Ducks and swans played on the water while children sailed their model boats. Young lovers walked arm in arm amidst flowers of every color and a fine view of the city skyline could be seen in the distance.

        As the man by the window described all this in exquisite detail, the man on the other side of the room would close his eyes and imagine the picturesque scene.

        One warm afternoon the man by the window described a parade passing by.

        Although the other man couldn’t hear the band – he could see it. In his mind’s eye as the gentleman by th! e window portrayed it with descriptive words.

        Days and weeks passed.

        One morning, the day nurse arrived to bring water for their baths only to find the lifeless body of the man by the window, who had died peacefully in his sleep. She was saddened and called the hospital attendants to take the body away.

        As soon as it seemed appropriate, the other man asked if he could be moved next to the window. The nurse was happy to make the switch, and after making sure he was comfortable, she left him alone.

        Slowly, painfully, he propped himself up on one elbow to take his first look at the real world outside.

        He strained to slowly turn to look out the window beside the bed.

        It faced a blank wall. The man asked the nurse what could have compelled his deceased roommate who had described such wonderful things outside this window

        The nurse responded that the man was blind and could not even see the wall.

        She said, “Perhaps he just wanted to encourage you.”

The Little Boy

Sally jumped up as soon as she saw the surgeon come out of the operating room. She said: “How is my little boy? Is he going to be all right? When can I see him?”

        The surgeon said, “I’m sorry. We did all we could, but your boy didn’t make it.”

        Sally said, “Why do little children get cancer? Doesn’t God care any more? Where were you, God, when my son needed you?”

        The surgeon asked, “Would you like some time alone with your son? One of the nurses will be out in a few minutes, before he’s transported to the university.”

        Sally asked the nurse to stay with her while she said good-bye to son. She ran her fingers lovingly through his thick red curly hair.

        “Would you like a lock of his hair?” the nurse asked.

        Sally nodded yes. The nurse cut a lock of the boy’s hair, put it in a plastic bag and handed it to Sally. The mother said, “It was Jimmy’s idea to donate his body to the university for study. He said it might help somebody else. “I said no at first, but Jimmy said, ‘Mom, I won’t be using it after I die. Maybe it will help some other little boy spend one more day with his Mom.” She went on, “My Jimmy had a heart of gold. Always thinking of someone else. Always wanting to help others if he could.”

        Sally walked out of Children’s mercy Hospital for the last time, after spending most of the last six months there. She put the bag with Jimmy’s belongings on the seat beside her in the car. The drive home was difficult. It was even harder to enter the empty house. She carried Jimmy’s belongings, and the plastic bag with the lock of his hair to her son’s room. She started placing the model cars and other personal things back in his room exactly where he had always kept them. She laid down across his bed and, hugging his pillow, cried herself to sleep.

        It was around midnight when Sally awoke. Laying beside her on the bed was a folded letter. The letter said:

        “Dear Mom,

        I know you’re going to miss me; but don’t think that I will ever forget you, or stop loving you, just ’cause I’m not around to say I LOVE YOU. I will always love you, Mom, even more with each day. Someday we will see each other again. Until then, if you want to adopt a little boy so you won’t be so lonely, that’s okay with me. He can have my room and old stuff to play with. But, if you decide to get a girl instead, she probably wouldn’t like the same things us boys do. You’ll have to buy her dolls and stuff girls like, you know. Don’t be sad thinking about me. This really is a neat place. Grandma and Grandpa met me as soon as I got here and showed me around some, but it will take a long time to see everything. The angels are so cool. I love to watch them fly. And, you know what? Jesus doesn’t look like any of his pictures. Yet, when I saw Him, I knew it was Him. Jesus himself took me to see GOD! And guess what, Mom? I got to sit on God’s knee and talk to Him, like I was somebody important. That’s when I told Him that I wanted to write you a letter, to tell you good-bye and everything. But I already knew that wasn’t allowed. Well, you know what Mom? God handed me some paper and His own personal pen to write you this letter. I think Gabriel is the name of the angel who is going to drop this letter off to you. God said for me to give you the answer to one of the questions you asked Him ‘Where was He when I needed him?’ “God said He was in the same place with me, as when His son Jesus was on the cross. He was right there, as He always is with all His children.

        Oh, by the way, Mom, no one else can see what I’ve written except you. To everyone else this is just a blank piece of paper. Isn’t that cool? I have to give God His pen back now. He needs it to write some more names in the Book of Life. Tonight I get to sit at the table with Jesus for supper. I’m, sure the food will be great.

        Oh, I almost forgot to tell you. I don’t hurt anymore. The cancer is all gone. I’m glad because I couldn’t stand that pain anymore and God couldn’t stand to see me hurt so much, either. That’s when He sent The Angel of Mercy to come get me. The Angel said I was a Special Delivery! How about that?

        Signed with Love from: God, Jesus and Me.”

The last cab ride

Twenty years ago, I drove a cab for a living. One time I arrived in the middle of the night for a pick up at a building that was dark except for a single light in a ground floor window.

        Under these circumstances, many drivers would just honk once or twice, wait a minute, then drive away. But I had seen too many impoverished people who depended on taxis as their only means of transportation. Unless a situation smelled of danger, I always went to the door. This passenger might be someone who needs my assistance, I reasoned to myself. So I walked to the door and knocked.

        “Just a minute,” answered a frail, elderly voice.

        I could hear something being dragged across the floor. After a long pause, the door opened. A small woman in her 80′s stood before me. She was wearing a print dress and a pillbox hat with a veil pinned on it, like somebody out of a 1940s movie. By her side was a small nylon suitcase.

        The apartment looked as if no one had lived in it for years. All the furniture was covered with sheets. There were no clocks on the walls, no knickknacks or utensils on the counters. In the corner was a cardboard box filled with photos and glassware.

        “Would you carry my bag out to the car?” she said. I took the suitcase to the cab, then returned to assist the woman. She took my arm and we walked slowly toward the curb. She kept thanking me for my kindness.

        “It’s nothing,” I told her. “I just try to treat my passengers the way I would want my mother treated.”

        “Oh, you’re such a good boy,” she said. When we got in the cab, she gave me an address, then asked, “Could you drive through downtown?”

        “It’s not the shortest way,” I answered quickly.

        “Oh, I don’t mind,” she said. “I’m in no hurry. I’m on my way to a hospice.”

        I looked in the rear view mirror. Her eyes were glistening.

        “I don’t have any family left,” she continued. “The doctor says I don’t have very long.”

        I quietly reached over and shut off the meter. “What route would you like me to take?” I asked.

        For the next two hours, we drove through the city. She showed me the building where she had once worked as an elevator operator. We drove through the neighborhood where she and her husband had lived when they were newlyweds. She had me pull up in front of a furniture warehouse that had once been a ballroom where she had gone dancing as a girl.

        Sometimes she’d ask me to slow in front of a particular building or corner and would sit staring into the darkness, saying nothing.

        As the first hint of sun was creasing the horizon, she suddenly said, “I’m tired. Let’s go now.”

        We drove in silence to the address she had given me.

        It was a low building, like a small convalescent home, with a driveway that passed under a portico. Two orderlies came out to the cab as soon as we pulled up. They were solicitous and intent, watching her every move. They must have been expecting her. I opened the trunk and took the small suitcase to the door. The woman was already seated in a wheelchair.

        “How much do I owe you?” she asked, reaching into her purse.

        “Nothing,” I said.

        “You have to make a living,” she answered.

        “There are other passengers.”

        Almost without thinking, I bent and gave her a hug. She held onto me tightly.

        “You gave an old woman a little moment of joy,” she said. “Thank you.”

        I squeezed her hand, then walked into the dim morning light. Behind me, a door shut. It was the sound of the closing of a life.

        I didn’t pick up any more passengers that shift. I drove aimlessly, lost in thought. For the rest of that day, I could hardly talk. What if that woman had gotten an angry driver, or one who was impatient to end his shift? What if I had refused to take the run, or had honked once, then driven away? On a quick review, I don’t think that I have done anything more important in my life. We’re conditioned to think that our lives revolve around great moments. But great moments often catch us unaware—beautifully wrapped in what others may consider a small one.

        A true story by Kent Nerburn

Give time to our family

After 21 years of marriage, my wife wanted me to take another woman out to dinner and a movie. She said, “I love you, but I know this other woman loves you and would love to spend some time with you.”

The other woman that my wife wanted me to visit was my MOTHER, who has been a widow for 19 years, but the demands of my work and my three children had made it possible to visit her only occasionally. That night I called to invite her to go out for dinner and a movie. “What’s wrong, are you well?” she asked.

My mother is the type of woman who suspects that a late night call or a surprise invitation is a sign of bad news. “I thought that it would be pleasant to spend some time with you,” I responded. “Just the two of us.” She thought about it for a moment, and then said, “I would like that very much.”

That Friday after work, as I drove over to pick her up I was a bit nervous. When I arrived at her house, I noticed that she, too, seemed to be nervous about our date. She waited in the door with her coat on. She had curled her hair and was wearing the dress that she had worn to celebrate her last wedding anniversary. She smiled from a face that was as radiant as an angel’s. “I told my friends that I was going to go out with my son, and they were impressed, “she said, as she got into the car. “They can’t wait to hear about our meeting.”

We went to a restaurant that, although not elegant, was very nice and cozy. My mother took my arm as if she were the First Lady. After we sat down, I had to read the menu. Her eyes could only read large print. Half way through the entries, I lifted my eyes and saw Mom sitting there staring at me. A nostalgic smile was on her lips. “It was I who used to have to read the menu when you were small,” she said. “Then it’s time that you relax and let me return the favor,” I responded. During the dinner, we had an agreeable conversation – nothing extraordinary but catching up on recent events of each other’s life. We talked so much that we missed the movie. As we arrived at her house later, she said, “I’ll go out with you again, but only if you let me invite you.” I agreed.

“How was your dinner date?” asked my wife when I got home. “Very nice. Much more so than I could have imagined,” I answered.

A few days later, my mother died of a massive heart attack. It happened so suddenly that I didn’t have a chance to do anything for her. Some time later, I received an envelope with a copy of a restaurant receipt from the same place mother and I had dined. An attached note said: “I paid this bill in advance. I wasn’t sure that I could be there; but nevertheless, I paid for two plates – one for you and the other for your wife. You will never know what that night meant for me. I love you, son.”

At that moment, I understood the importance of saying in time: “I LOVE YOU” and to give our loved ones the time that they deserve. Nothing in life is more important than your family. Give them the time they deserve, because these things cannot be put off till “some other time.”

LIVE AND WORK

Father was a hardworking man who delivered bread as a living to support his wife and three children. He spent all his evenings after work attending classes, hoping to improve himself so that he could one day find a better paying job. Except for Sundays, Father hardly ate a meal together with his family. He worked and studied very hard because he wanted to provide his family with the best money could buy.

Whenever the family complained that he was not spending enough time with them, he reasoned that he was doing all this for them. But he often yearned to spend more time with his family.

The day came when the examination results were announced. To his joy, Father passed, and with distinctions too! Soon after, he was offered a good job as a senior supervisor which paid handsomely.

Like a dream come true, Father could now afford to provide his family with life’s little luxuries like nice clothing, fine food and vacation abroad.

However, the family still did not get to see father for most of the week. He continued to work very hard, hoping to be promoted to the position of manager. In fact, to make himself a worthily candidate for the promotion, he enrolled for another course in the open university.

Again, whenever the family complained that he was not spending enough time with them, he reasoned that he was doing all this for them. But he often yearned to spend more time with his family.

Father’s hard work paid off and he was promoted. Jubilantly, he decided to hire a maid to relieve his wife from her domestic tasks. He also felt that their three-room flat was no longer big enough, it would be nice for his family to be able to enjoy the facilities and comfort of a condominium. Having experienced the rewards of his hard work many times before, Father resolved to further his studies and work at being promoted again. The family still did not get to see much of him. In fact, sometimes Father had to work on Sundays entertaining clients. Again, whenever the family complained that he was not spending enough time with them, he reasoned that he was doing all this for them. But he often yearned to spend more time with his family.

As expected, Father’s hard work paid off again and he bought a beautiful condominium overlooking the coast of Singapore. On the first Sunday evening at their new home, Father declared to his family that he decided not to take anymore courses or pursue any more promotions. From then on he was going to devote more time to his family.

Father did not wake up the next day.

The important thing in life

A philosophy professor stood before his class with some items on the table in front of him. When the class began, wordlessly he picked up a very large and empty mayonnaise jar and proceeded to fill it with rocks, about 2 inches in diameter.

        He then asked the students if the jar was full. They agreed that it was.

        So the professor then picked up a box of pebbles and poured them into the jar. He shook the jar lightly. The pebbles, of course, rolled into the open areas between the rocks.

        He then asked the students again if the jar was full. They agreed it was.

        The professor picked up a box of sand and poured it into the jar. Of course, the sand filled up the remaining open areas of the jar.

        He then asked once more if the jar was full. The students responded with a unanimous “Yes.”

        “Now,” said the professor, “I want you to recognize that this jar represents your life. The rocks are the important things – your family, your partner, your health, your children – things that if everything else was lost and only they remained, your life would still be full. The pebbles are the other things that matter – like your job, your house, your car. The sand is everything else, the small stuff.”

        “If you put the sand into the jar first,” he continued, “there is no room for the pebbles or the rocks. The same goes for your life. If you spend all your time and energy on the small stuff, you will never have room for the things that are important to you. Pay attention to the things that are critical to your happiness. Play with your children. Take your partner out dancing. There will always be time to go to work, clean the house, give a dinner party, or fix the disposal.”

        “Take care of the rocks first – the things that really matter. Set your priorities. The rest is just sand.”
   

Take care of yourself

A cobbler lived in a town and he was the only cobbler there.

So, he was responsible for repairing the boots of everybody else.

However, he didn’t have time to repair his own    boots.

This wasn’t a problem at first, but over time, his boots began to deteriorate and fall apart.

While he worked feverishly on the boots of everyone else, his feet got blisters and he started to limp.

His customers started to worry about him. But he reassured them that everything was OK.

However, after a few years, the cobbler’s feet were so injured that he could no longer work and no one’s boots got repaired.

As a consequence, soon the entire town started to limp in pain.

All because the cobbler never took the time to repair his own boots.

This simple principle is so often disregarded. If you don’t look after yourself, after a while you will be no good to anyone else either. 

Your best intentions will mean nothing and you will be unable to do what you are meant to do.

This goes for leaders, social workers, teachers even parents.

If you don’t take the time to care for yourself, no one else will.

Are you taking care of yourself ?

Have a good time ahead and kindly take care of yourself.

Enjoy what you have

A guy met one of his school mates several years after school and he could not believe his eyes; his friend was driving one of the latest sleek Mercedes Benz cars. He went home feeling awful and very disappointed in himself. He thought he was a failure. What he didn't know was that his friend was a driver and had been sent to run errands with his boss's car.
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Rosemary nagged  her husband always for not being romantic. She accused him for not getting down to open the car door for her as her friend Jane's husband did when he dropped her off at work. What Rosemary didn't know that Jane's husband car had a faulty door that could only be opened from the outside.
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Sampson's wife went to visit one of her long time friends and was very troubled within for seeing the 3 lovely kids of her friend playing around. Her problem was that she had only one child and have been struggling to conceive for the past five years. What she didn't know was that one of those kids who was the biological child of her friend had sickle cell and had just a year to live; the other two are adopted.
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Life does not have a universal measuring tool so create yours and use it.  Looking at people and comparing yourself with them will not make you better. If you knew the sort of load the chameleon carried, you would'nt ask why it takes those gentle strides. Enjoy what you have.

Protect the root of your business

A young man and his father were watching a huge fire coming down from the hills towards their family vineyard. At first, the young man tried to organize buckets of water but it was clear that the fire would engulf everything and consume the vineyard. Then to his surprise he saw the old man pick up an axe and run towards the vines. Systematically he began to cut the vines, leaving only the roots.

"We must protect the root, my son. Do as I show you."

And with this they saved a business that was several generations old.

Every business has a root, and you must know that root. You must be able to protect that root, when things are tough.  Sometimes protecting that root looks cruel, but you must protect it at all costs. Sometimes it can come down to reducing activity to the bare minimum, with just a handful of staff.  Your most valuable resource will always be good people.

There's no successful entrepreneur who does not know what I'm talking about.  It may well be one of the most difficult things you'll ever do.

# Stay very clear about who you are and what business you're in.

# Don’t underestimate the crisis.

# Make sure you’re looking at credible data.

# Manage with grace under pressure.

# Review and revise your game plan as needed, acknowledging which plans aren’t working.

# Decide what you need to do in order to get where you want to go.

# Tackle the problems systematically. Don’t throw kerosene onto a fire.

# Don’t get distracted; make the tough decisions that you need to, without delay. One bucket of water won’t save a hectare of crisis.

# Seek and value professional advice.

# Don’t be afraid to try something new. Crisis is often how great innovation begins. (When the going gets tough, don’t give up on new growth!)

# Lead with courage and vision, even if your heart is sad.

Don’t panic. Pray and plan..