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Sep 23, 2019 142 0 Antony Kalapurackal
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Know the Value of What You Possess

Has it ever occurred to you that life is not worth living? Were there times when you wished if only there was a second chance?

It was the offertory time of one fine Sunday morning Mass. I pulled out my wallet from my pocket to distribute our offering among the children so they can contribute into the collection box. While the each of the elder boys received $1 coins, little Lucina got a $10 bill. She looked happily at the bill that she had received. She then looked over at what her big brothers got. To her “disappointment,” she realised that both of her brothers had golden metallic coins while she received a mere “paper”! She turned towards me and her expression clearly depicted: “Why this discrimination Dad?” I immediately swapped her bill with the coin of one of the boys and this made her happy.

The “Real” Value

Often enough the way we handle something largely depends on the value we assign to it. Ironically, many of us do not know the real value of the most important possession we have: the gift of life! Even worse, we don’t care about it! As a result, the way we handle our lives is not the way it ought to be! But, how do I know the “real” value of my life? Who can tell me that? What difference can it make?

Well, I think it is something that can’t be taught, but has to be learned by spending much time and effort! We can very well imagine the result, had I tried to “convince” little Lucina, that the value of a $10 bill is greater than a $1 coin, so as to not swap it! She was not yet ready to understand that. In the same way, it is futile to “teach” the value of life to someone who is not yet ready to
accept it.

What difference it can make when we start understanding the real value of our life? Well, it makes all the difference! Our perspective, attitude and priorities will all change! There will be a paradigm shift and our life will no longer be the same!
Since the priorities are very different for a person who has a better understanding of the value of his life, the way he lives will significantly differ from other people. The decisions he make, based on his priorities, might seem idiotic to others.

Deciding Factor

Recently, Israel Folau, a prominent Australian professional rugby player and a devout Christian, was sacked from rugby union, because he refused to withdraw his faith related Instagram post. The decision to keep his post had cost him his career and a great deal of money, but Israel Folau considered that his faith is more valuable than his career and money.

What prevents people from seeking the true value of life? I believe the primary issue is the lack of openness. To examine this, let Lucina be attributed a bit of analysing capabilities. When her brother happily accepted the “paper” instead of the coin, she could think in two ways:
 My brother is brainless to accept a “paper” instead
of his gold-colored coin.
 Why has my brother happily swapped his beautiful
coin with a mere “paper”? Does this “paper” have more
value than I thought of?

In the first approach, she has already decided that her brother’s decision is an idiotic one. She places her level of intelligence above her brother’s. This is a major block for learning. In the second case, she recognizes her brother’s intelligence and accepts that her knowledge is not complete. She is open to learning.

In the same way, when a person does something that can’t be explained within our present capacity, the best way of approach is to move forward, give due respect to his decision and be open to analyze in a different angle rather than label him as “Stupid.” Regardless of the final conclusion, this approach guarantees your growth in knowledge and wisdom.
What should be my approach? How much value do I give to my life? Is the way I live my life a reflection of its true value?

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Let us find a calm place and close our eyes. Imagine that you have only a few more days in life. Try to rewind your whole life. Are you happy with it or do you really wish if only you had a second chance?
Now, open your eyes and see that you do have a second chance! How are you going to spend it? God has made each of us as a first-class original; do not die a second-grade copy! —John Mason

 

Antony Kalapurackal

© Antony Kalapurackal serves in the Editorial Council of Shalom Tidings. Antony lives in Brisbane with his wife Vinita and children Abiel, Ashish, and Lucina.

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