The next password is blake

NO. 26


On a day by day basis, how we view our circumstances life is often a matter of perspective and this is especially true when it comes to raising children. Here is an example of what I mean: One time a woman said to a friend, "Our marriage would have broken up years ago if it hadn't been for the children. We can't get a divorce, because he won't take them and neither will I."

Children are a precious gift from God, but they don't always perform or act in a manner we would like for them to. As parents, we want the best for our children and in most cases have high expectations of them. A good case in point is the story about a college girl who wrote her mother the following letter:

Dear Mother,
I'm sorry I haven't written these last four months. The reason I haven't is because of a brain operation I had, which was the result of a concussion I received when I jumped from the fourth story of the dormitory when it caught fire. Fortunately, a young service station attendant across the street saw the fire, called the fire department and the ambulance and got me to the hospital in time.

While I was in the hospital, the young man visited me regularly. When I was released, I had no place to go. He invited me to share his apartment. It wasn't really an apartment, it was just a basement room. It was kind of cute. Yes, Mother, I am in love. I'm pregnant and we do plan to get married. The reason we haven't already gotten married is because of some silly disease he had and he failed the blood test.

Your Loving Daughter

P.S. Now, Mother, this is just to let you know: I did not have the brain operation. There was no concussion. I did not jump from the dormitory. It did not catch on fire. I am not in love. I'm sure not going to get married! I did make a "D" in English and an "F" in history. I thought you ought to see these two things in their proper perspective.

Now, I believe you'll agree, after the first part of the daughter's letter, the long-suffering mother was happy about a "D" in English and an "F" in history. After reading this story, I began to reflect on it and a couple of observations came to mind. Everything is relative, and only when we have the common sense to place things in perspective are we able to properly deal with them. When you think about that daughter away at college -- in all likelihood at her parents' expense -- I'm sure her mother expected her to do better than a "D" in English and an "F" in history. The daughter knew her mother's expectations. Why else would she have gone to such great lengths to compose her masterpiece?

As individuals, if we are to profit from this story, we should consider the underlying fact that sooner or later we will be held accountable for our actions. If we short change ourselves in taking full advantage of life's opportunities, we are the ones who ultimately suffer the consequences. The message here is simple. Let's make sure we do our best to take advantage of our opportunities when we have the chance. In many cases, real opportunity only knocks once. To make sure our ship comes in, we must first make sure we have sent one out. A good education is vital in today's technological age. (EDITOR'S NOTE: Jim Davidson is a motivational speaker and syndicated columnist. You may contact him at 2 Bentley Drive, Conway, Arkansas 72034.)

The next column password is: Blake