Friday, January 29, 2010

The gifts of Gratitude, a Day, and Love

As we finish up the last gifts we finish up Chapters 12-14 with the gifts of Gratitude, a Day and Love. This will be my last post before our meeting this upcoming Saturday, January 30th, 8:30 AM-10:00AM. I will do my regular follow up completion of the book post next week after we have had our meeting. Let's get to it!

"In those times we yearn to have more in our lives, we should dwell on the things we already have. In doing so, we will often find that our lives are already full to overflowing." Chapter 12, The gift of Gratitude. As with each chapter and gift Red starts off explaining why he chose this particular gift to teach Jason. Red states during this video a statement that couldn't be more true, "I have always found it ironic that the people in the world that have the most to be thankful for are often the least thankful, and somehow the people who have virtually nothing, many times live lives full of gratitude." Red continues to explain how he learned about something that helped keep his gratitude in check, The Golden List. The Golden List is something that Red would do every morning, before he got out of bed, he would think of 10 things he was thankful for that morning. Jason's challenge is to think of a list to provide to Mr. Hamilton and continue the tradition of thinking of your own list each morning. As you have probably guessed Jason makes it through this task demonstrating 10 great things to be thankful. I challenge you to do this if you don't already have some version of The Golden List you do your self in the morning. When you get up think up your own list and thank God for that list and the fact that you just got up another morning!

"Life at its essence boils down to one day at a time. Today is the day!" The gift of a Day is our Chapter 13. Our chapter opens up on Mr. Hamilton reflecting on his friendship with Red. Red comes on the video screen and shares with Jason the task of planning how he would want to spend the last day of his life. Red tells Jason he wants him to discover what he already has, "Why should we wait until the last day of our lives to begin living the maximum day?" Jason returns after a month with his description of his last day. You could say that he def got the point that Red was trying to get across to him and he realized that instead of doing anything really spectacular it's the simple things that are so important. It's the time spent with family and friends that in the big perspective you can't afford to waste or let things go unsaid. Red talks about how the younger we are and we realize the gift of a day the better we are for it. I pray that each of us keeps this in mind day today and that you don't put off things that are important to you or could be important to others.

"Love is a treasure for which we can never pay. The only way we keep it is to give it away." Our last gift, Chapter 14, The gift of Love. Red starts out on the tape reminding Jason with a few more comments concerning the gift of a day, "..probably nothing that you would plan for your last day of life that you couldn't do today or tomorrow. Somehow, I think life's tragedies are made up not as much of the great failures as the simple pleasures and kind gestures missed." Red tells Jason this about his gift of love, "Anything good, honorable, and desirable in life is based in love." Jason's task for this last month is to review all his past gifts and explore how love is a part of each one. Jason returns and is able to correctly reflect on how love was involved in each gift Red gave to him. I won't repeat each one but what he has to say about the final gift, love. "If I were going to really try to define The Gift of Love in tangible terms, I would have to cite as an example what my Uncle Red did for me and gave me during this last year. When we truly love someone else, our love makes us a different person, and it makes them a different person." "My Uncle Red's love for me in giving me The Ultimate Gift, forever changed my life and who I am." It is so encouraging to see this change in Jason considering how he behaved at the beginning of the book. Jason is happy, encouraged and ready to continue living his new found love for life. But.. not to soon... He soon finds out that there is just one more part to The Ultimate Gift. After our meeting tomorrow I will come back next week, go over our last chapter and share some details of the meeting. Hope to see you there! Happy Reading!

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