Marie was a single mother of two children in a rural Missouri community. She worked full-time during the day and sold handcrafted leather gifts on weekends. She also dedicated much spare time to numerous charities and community projects.
Then one day Marie received some shocking news from her doctor. She had cancer, and it was spreading rapidly. She had barely enough resources to put a dent in the medical treatments she would need.
Soon, Marie witnessed what she had always known: although she was not financially wealthy, she already had the most valuable possessions on earth. Hundreds in her community and surrounding areas teamed up to help her and her family.
Many people she had touched in caring ways demonstrated appreciation for Marie's life. Marie did not live to see the day when her bills were fully paid. However, she lived long enough to feel the love of those she had cheerfully served.
The spirits of love and gratitude multiply when they are shared. Happiness is the result of sharing love and gratitude. Giving selflessly was a value that Marie displayed all her life, and her spirit of giving lived after her in those who knew and loved her.
All her life, Marie had demonstrated the truth of this simple principle: happiness will not come from worldly possessions or fortune. Rather, it is an attitude that comes from appreciating what we already have. We can find the happiness we seek if we will first share it with others. Then—and only then—we will have the most valuable possessions on earth: love, happiness, and increasing gratitude.
Here is a great nugget of wisdom that I keep in my e-journal. It is from Lillian Watson's book, “Light from Many Lamps".
“True happiness stems from a quality within ourselves, from a way of thinking of life. Of all the millions of words written on happiness, this is the oldest and most enduring truth. If the principles of contentment are not within us, no material success, no pleasures or possessions, can make us happy. "Give the heart-felt gifts of time, caring and gratitude to someone who needs them today. Their value will increase and return to you many times.
Wishing you success and happiness!
© Copyright 2005 by Steve Brunkhorst. Steve is a professional life success coach, motivational author, and the editor of Achieve! 60-Second Nuggets of Inspiration, a popular mini-zine bringing great stories, motivational nuggets, and inspiring thoughts to help you achieve more in your career and personal life. Get the next issue by visiting http://www.AchieveEzine.com