Reflections - Sept. 29, 2017

Five Simple Rules

dan

The other day Carol shared a story with me she had picked up on Facebook.  Normally, I don't pass along those stories because I figure everyone has already seen them, but this one grabbed my attention.

The story told of a 92 year old woman who was always gracious, tasteful, cultured and pleasant.  For a number of reasons beyond her control, the day came when she needed to move to a nursing home.

On the day she entered, she had to wait for many hours in the lobby.  Finally, as she was being shown to her room, the representative began to describe the room to her.  Immediately, she replied enthusiastically, "I love it."  Surprised, the representative explained that they had not yet even gotten to the room.

"That doesn't have anything to do it," responded the 92 year old.  "Happiness is something you decide ahead of time.  Whether I like my room or not doesn't depend on how the furniture is arranged; it's how I arrange my mind.  I've already decided to love it.  It's a decision I make every morning when I wake.  I have a choice."

She then went on to explain that old age is like a bank account from which you withdraw that which you have deposited.  And then with a smile she said, "Remember the five simple rules to be happy:

  1. Free your heart from hatred.
  2. Free your mind from worries.
  3. Live simply.
  4. Give more.
  5. Expect less & enjoy more.

When I finished reading that article, I couldn't help but wonder how many of our social ills would be cured, how much richer we would find life, and how much happier many of us would be if we adopted her attitude and lived by her five simple rules.

I also couldn't help but notice the similarity between her rules and things that Jesus talked about in his Sermon on the Mount.  Jesus never suggested living this way would be easy, but he did say it was possible, and we would experience a quality of life that doesn't come any other way.

Rev. Dan Brown
Senior Pastor

 

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