I recently heard this short anecdote about a father and son. The father is wealthy and, believing his son will learn from the trip, he takes the little guy to "see how poor people live."
The dad thinks the encounter will motivate his son to work hard so that he never lives like those people. What his son learns instead blows the father away.
One day a very wealthy father took his son on a trip to the country for the sole purpose of showing his son how it was to be poor. They spent a few days and nights on the farm of what would be considered a very poor family.
"So what did you learn from the trip?' asked the father. The son answered, "I saw that we have one dog and they had four. We have a pool that reaches to the middle of our garden and they have a creek that has no end.
'We have imported lanterns in our garden and they have the stars at night. Our patio reaches to the front yard and they have the whole horizon. We have a small piece of land to live on and they have fields that go beyond our sight. We have servants who serve us, but they serve others.
"'We buy our food, but they grow theirs. We have walls around our property to protect us, they have friends to protect them." The boy's father was speechless. Then his son added, "It showed me just how poor we really are."
Too many times we forget what we have and concentrate on what we don't have. What is one person's worthless object is another's prize possession. It is all based on one's perspective. Sometimes it takes the perspective of a child to remind us what's important.
Sometimes it's those who are poor in material possessions that have the most to give. May your holidays be filled with love, compassion and kindness!
With sincere gratitude,