I recently learned of the death of a musician I admire. Ruud was a trombonist in André Rieu’s orchestra. Besides being a talented musician, he was something of a comic spark plug, performing clever antics in skits the orchestra wove into their performances.
One day all of our hearts will stop beating, but while they still pulse we would do well to count them all as precious. Every heartbeat represents God’s intention that you have a purpose in the world and a reason to be alive. While many of us believe we are here to achieve a notable act or make lots of money, our real mission is based on the quality of our relationships.
While in Japan I met an American woman who had been living in that country for twenty years. I asked her how long it had taken her to learn the Japanese language. “A couple of years,” she answered. “But I still don’t understand everything. Just the things that interest me.
As I read my credit card statement, my eyes bulged. I was being billed for two $5,000 cash advances I had not taken. Then there was a clothing shopping spree in Dallas. Someone had stolen my credit card information and went to town on it.
Many years ago a young Kansas City artist struggled to get his cartoons published in city newspapers. His offerings, however, were met with rejection after rejection. “Forget it,” editors told him. “You have no talent. Get a real job.” But the artist felt that he did have talent and he refused to compromise his career.
Life is not a series of opportunities to get somewhere. Life is a series of opportunities to be somewhere. Difficulties are not oppressions from a dark source. They are invitations to be a light source. Bank teller Emily has more change to offer than I can count.