“Life is partly what we make it, and partly what it is made by the friends we choose.”
These next four days are going to be great. My doctor has prescribed four days of rest to help me recuperate. Laziness without guilt, wonderful, after all I am only following Doctor’s orders. Sometimes age has its benefits.
One of the true benefits of aging is the number of lessons learned in a life time. If done well aging provides us the opportunity to become what we should have been in our youth. One of the best lessons I have learned has been to avoid making quick judgments. I have been amazed at how many people that I thought little of at first turned out to be really special. The fault was never with them, it was my not seeing them as they really were. As life has gone on I have found the value of not quickly walking by folks rather than stopping and visiting with a potential new friend. Here is a story that I like that has wisdom for us all.
A man was exploring caves by the seashore. In one of the caves he found a canvas bag with a bunch of hardened clay balls. It was like someone had rolled clay balls and left them out in the sun to bake. They didn’t look like much, but they intrigued the man so he took the bag out of the cave with him.
As he strolled along the beach, he would throw the clay balls one at a time out into the ocean as far as he could. He thought little about it until he dropped one of the balls and it cracked open on a rock. Inside was a beautiful, precious stone. Excited the man started breaking open the remaining clay balls. Each contained a similar treasure.
He found thousands of dollars worth of jewels in the 20 or so clay balls he had left. Then it struck him. He had been on the beach a long time. He had thrown maybe 50 or 60 of the clay balls with their hidden treasure into the ocean waves. Instead of thousands of dollars in treasure, he could have taken home tens of thousands, but he just threw it away.
It’s like that with people. We look at someone, maybe even ourselves, and we see the external clay vessel. It doesn’t look like much from the outside. It isn’t always beautiful or sparkling so we discount it. We see that person as less important than someone more beautiful or stylish or well known or wealthy. But we have not taken the time to find the treasure hidden inside that person by God.
There is a treasure in each and every one of us. If we take the time to get to know that person, and if we ask God to show us that person the way He sees them, then the clay begins to peel away and the brilliant gem begins to shine forth.
May we not come to the end of our lives and find out that we have thrown away a fortune in friendships because the gems were hidden in bits of clay.
I love making new friends and I respect people for a lot of different reasons.
Officer: “Soldier, do you have change for a dollar?” Soldier: “Sure, buddy.”
Officer: “That’s no way to address an officer! Now let’s try it again!”
Officer: “Soldier. Do you have change for a dollar?” Soldier: “No, SIR!”
How do you get off a non-stop flight?
A lady on her first visit to Yellowstone National Park said to her guide, “Look at all those big rocks. Wherever did they come from?”
“The glaciers brought them down,” said the guide.
“But where are the glaciers?”
“The glaciers,” said the guide in a weary voice, “have gone back for more rocks.”
42.7 percent of all statistics are made up on the spot.
A man lost a valuable dog. He advertised in a small local newspaper; offering a very generous $5000 reward for it, but got no replies.
He stopped by the newspaper office to check on results of his ad. “I’d like to see Shapiro the advertising manager.” he said.
“He’s out,” said Moishe, the office boy.
“Well, how about his assistant?”
“He’s out too, sir.”
“Goodness! Is everybody out – where are they?”
“They’re all searching for your dog!”
All generalizations are false.
Our phone rang late one night, and my wife Nancy picked
it up. She said, “No,” and slammed it down.
“Who was that?”
“Some boy for Carolyn,” she said, referring to our daughter.
Then it rang again. Nancy listened, said, “Kit Kat,” and hung up.
“What now?” I asked.
“A boy plans to ask Carolyn to the prom and wanted to know what her favorite candy is. He’s going to put the invitation into a candy basket.”
The next morning a basket of candy was on our porch. “But, Mom,” our daughter protested when she heard the story, “Kit Kat isn’t my favorite.”
“I know,” Nancy said. “It’s mine.”
“I’ve had a perfectly wonderful evening. But this wasn’t it.”
The Fourth of July weekend was approaching, and Miss Pelham, the nursery school teacher, took the opportunity to tell her class about patriotism. ‘We live in a great country,’ she announced. ‘One of the things we should be happy is that, in this country, we are all free.’
Trevor, who was a little boy in her class, came walking up to her from the back of the room. He stood with his hands on his hips and said loudly, ‘I’m not free. I’m four.’
I cannot even imagine where I would be today were it not for that handful of friends who have given me a heart full of joy. Let’s face it, friends make life a lot more fun.
Charles R. Swindoll
Stay well, do good work, and have fun.
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