"Are you happy?"
(©2002 By: Bob Perks - Bob@BobPerks.com)

7-10-02 Church Within SOW Seeds Service - Story #196

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Greetings my Dearest Sisters and Brothers, and welcome again to Church Within's Story of the Week ["SOW Seeds"].

This week's SOW Seeds Story, contributed by: Bob Perks

Story of the Week
"Are you happy?"
(By: Bob Perks - Bob@BobPerks.com)
"Daddy, are you happy?" the little girl asked.  Her father surprised by the question replied, "Why yes, I believe I am."
"How do you know?" she asked.
"Well, because I am here with you and that makes me happy," he replied.
"So when you are not with me are you still happy?"
Now, thinking this to be a trick question, the father pauses for a moment and says, "Yes, I am happy then, but even more so when we are together."
"So being with someone is all you need to be happy?" she asked.
"No, there's more to it than that," he replied.  "Why are you asking all of these questions?"
"I was watching television while you and Mom were at work and the lady asked that question, "Are you happy?"  So I thought I'd find out what it meant to be happy.  I've been asking people all day."
"You have?  What did you learn?"
"Well, Mom says she's happy when she is at home.  Mr. James next door is happy when he is working in his garden.  Grandmom says, she's happy when she's singing with the choir."
"You see, everyone is happy with different things," Dad added.
"Except for Mrs. Drake.  She said she'll be happy when God calls her home."
"That's her faith and love of God."
"But if those things make people happy, then they are only happy when they are doing them."
Dad thought about what she said and then added, "Well, people can't be happy all the time."
"Why not?" she asked.
"Well, what makes you happy?" Dad asked of her. "Are you happy all the time?"
"I am happy all the time, because I'm happy to be alive," she said looking up at her Father.
Her statement hit him hard. He was nearly breathless.  He reached down for her hand and kissed it gently.  Then running his fingers over the top of her pale, nearly hairless head, he stopped for a moment, reached down for her chin and gently kissed her on the cheek.
He had forgotten.  He wasn't looking at the world through her eyes, the eyes of a child fighting for her life.  Cancer had stripped her of all the things a healthy young child takes for granted.  The irony of it all is the child had learned the greatest lesson of all.  The lesson it normally takes a lifetime to learn.
There is nothing more valuable than life itself.  Most of us who are blessed with good health our entire life search for happiness in the stuff of life.  We are unhappy when we don't have the things that make us happy. 
I discovered this when my own son, Keith had cancer.  I remember there was this invisible line drawn between us.  Up to that point when he had cancer I could share my fatherly wisdom with him.  My own experiences helped me to relate to his.  That is until he faced life and death.  There I stood on one side of the line and he on the other.  I could not say, "I know what you are going through."
I learned to look at life through his eyes and still do to this day.  For he has been down the road a bit ahead of me, not by years, but by the reality of almost losing his life.
Ask him, "Are you happy?" 
"He'll reply, "I'm alive!"
Everything else are gifts.  You can't get much happier than that!
"Are you happy?"

The Prayer
Dear God,        
        I am Happy when I remember You are with me now and Always.

You ALL are Within the Infinitely Loving Embrace of our Universal Parent,

The Creator's Eternal Love to all of You,
Pastor Daniel

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