Albert Einstein said, “There are only two ways to live your life. One is as though nothing is a miracle. The other is as though everything is a miracle.”1 His point is that we need to view life with a good attitude, cheerful, and determined to make a contribution.
There is an old Yiddish folk tale about an elderly man who sat outside of a great city. When travelers approached, they would ask him,
“What kind of people live here?”
The old man would answer, “What kind of people lived in the place where you came from?”
If the travelers answered, “Only bad people lived in the place where we came from,”
then the old man would reply, “Continue on; you will find only bad people here.”
But if the travelers answered,
“Only good people lived in the place where we came from,” then the old man would say,
“Enter, for here, too, you will find only good people.”2
The Bible says we are to “think on the good things” (Philippians 4:8).
A wise man advised,
“Don’t think when you have troubles that your neighbor goes scot-free
because he shows a smiling front and battles cheerfully.
No, man! He too has troubles, but herein the difference lies;
while you go idly moping ‘round, the other fellow tries!
Don’t envy other people; maybe, if the truth you knew,
you’d find their burdens heavier far than is the case with you.
Because a fellow, rain or shine, can show a smiling face,
don’t think you’d have an easier time if you could take his place.
Tis hope and cheery courage that incite one to retrieve
one’s past mistakes, to start afresh, to dare, and to achieve.
So smile, and if perchance you light the spark of hope anew
in some poor, sad, and burdened heart, all honor be to you.”3
“The poorest way to face life is to face it with a sneer” (Theodore Roosevelt).4
© 2016 D & L Publications
- Noah benShea, The Word: Jewish Wisdom through Time, Random House, published in Readers Digest, February, 1998.
- Christian Clippings, P. O. 3867, Holiday, FL, May, 1998.
- Ibid, October, 1997.