I received the following story in an email sent to me by my parents the other day. I thought it was wonderful and had a great message so I wanted to share it with you.
Reading this, it reminded me a lot of the movie The Notebook. I cry every time I watch that movie. The devotion of the husband in that movie is remarkable.
I really love the idea about happiness presented here. We are a society that likes to collect stuff. Cars, homes, clothes, fancy things. They say you can’t buy happiness and I think that is so true. You can have more toys than you could ever play with, but it will not make you happy. Happiness comes from within you. It is a decision you make. You can choose to be happy with whatever you have or whatever your circumstances are. The world and the people in this world can’t make you unhappy. Only you can make you unhappy.
If you find that you are a person who is unhappy more than you are happy, you need to take a look inside yourself and ask yourself why you are unhappy. What is the real cause of your happiness? What do you need to change in your attitude so that you can make yourself happy?
Remember, to be happy, you don’t have to have the best of everything, you just have to make the best of whatever you have. In my life, there have been times that I have been very poor and times where it seemed like I had plenty of money. Looking back, some of my happiest times where when I did not have hardly any money.
The other thing that really struck me is the level of love that this old man had for his wife. He could have easily deserted her in that nursing home and she would have never known the difference. He would have known though and that is the difference.
In our society today, so many people are so quick to get divorced. It is right around 50% of all marriages in the US that end in divorce. This is a staggering statistic. What is the problem?
I believe the main problem is a lack of true love. Too many people look for what they can get out of a relationship. Does this person make me happy? What can this person do for me? If we don’t feel we are getting the level of satisfaction from the marriage, our tendency is to get divorced and move on to the next person. This never works though because the next person will have their own set of faults that is most-likely different from the person you just left.
Take a person who has been married and divorced 4 times. What is the common denominator? It is that person. They have to look inside themselves and see what the real problem is. I bet the farm that the problem is a lack of true love.
So what is true love? Let’s go to the Bible a second and find out.
13 If I speak in the tongues of men or of angels, but do not have love, I am only a resounding gong or a clanging cymbal. 2 If I have the gift of prophecy and can fathom all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have a faith that can move mountains, but do not have love, I am nothing. 3 If I give all I possess to the poor and give over my body to hardship that I may boast,but do not have love, I gain nothing.
4 Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. 5 It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. 6 Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. 7 It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.
8 Love never fails. But where there are prophecies, they will cease; where there are tongues, they will be stilled; where there is knowledge, it will pass away. 9 For we know in part and we prophesy in part, 10 but when completeness comes, what is in part disappears. 11 When I was a child, I talked like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child. When I became a man, I put the ways of childhood behind me. 12 For now we see only a reflection as in a mirror; then we shall see face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I am fully known.
13 And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love.
1 Corinthians 13
How many times we have been to a wedding and heard this verse said, but have we really listened to what it is saying? It describes what a true love looks like. So many young people nod their heads on their wedding day to this verse, but never really take it to heart.
When we look at true love we have to move past the physical portion. We have to move past the romantic portion. These are both important parts of relationships, but they are not what is the most important. What is the most important is the true acceptance of that person. That means that you will love that person for who they are not for what you want them to be. You understand that they are human and will screw up. They will make you mad more than you want to realize. You choose to forgive them. You choose to love them despite this. You do things for that person, not for what you will get in return, but just to do it expecting nothing in return.
This is the kind of love that Jesus shows towards each one of us. If we can model our marriages, our relationships after this type of love, then we will be right on track. It won’t matter if the person you love finds themselves in a situation where they do not remember who you are. You love them anyway because a true love goes far beyond that.
I hope you enjoy this touching story!
It was a busy morning, about 8:30, when an elderly gentleman in his 80’s arrived to have stitches removed from his thumb.
He said he was in a hurry as he had an appointment at 9:00 am. I took his vital signs and had him take a seat, knowing it would be over an hour before someone would to able to see him. I saw him looking at his watch and decided, since I was not busy with another patient, I would evaluate his wound. On exam, it was well healed, so I talked to one of the doctors, got the needed supplies to remove his sutures and redress his wound.
While taking care of his wound, I asked him if he had another doctor’s appointment this morning, as he was in such a hurry.
The gentleman told me no, that he needed to go to the nursing home to eat breakfast with his wife. I inquired as to her health. He told me that she had been there for a while and that she was a victim of Alzheimer’s Disease.
As we talked, I asked if she would be upset if he was a bit late. He
replied that she no longer knew who he was, that she had not
recognized him in five years now. I was surprised, and asked him,
‘And you still go every morning, even though she doesn’t know who you are?’ He smiled as he patted my hand and said, ‘She doesn’t know me, but I still know who she is.’
I had to hold back tears as he left, I had goose bumps on my arm, and thought, ‘That is the kind of love I want in my life.’
True love is neither physical, nor romantic.
True love is an acceptance of all that is, has been, will be, and will not be.
The happiest people don’t necessarily have the best of everything;
they just make the best of everything they have.