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WIT & WISDOM - October 2, 1998
Tell me who you love and I will tell you who you are. - Houssaye 
~~~~~~~ SPECIAL THOUGHTS:
The nursing aides for the 89-year-old man planned a surprise party for him. This active and alert retired doctor had his leg amputated two years ago. It had been a struggle to adjust to living his life with only one leg, spending most of his time in a wheelchair.
Family, friends and volunteers filled the brightly decorated room. He looked at the group and signaled a sweet six-year-old girl, the grandchild of one of his aides, to come over to him. He reached out and put his arm around her. He introduced her and announced, "She is my mascot!" He went on to tell the group assembled that he would never forget the first time she visited. She came in, looked at him and his folded up pants leg in the wheelchair, and in her charming voice asked, "Where is your prosthesis?" He was astounded she knew the word. She showed him her prosthesis and told him her story. When she was three years old, a man broke into her home, killed her 17-month-old brother and, with a machete, cut off her leg.
He said this young girl taught him not to complain and to be grateful for the 88 years during which he had two legs. They share a very special bond. She feels proud that she was able to help a very old man. He has a very special smile for the young girl who walks with joyful and energetic steps, the prosthesis removing all barriers from her path.
By Hedy J. Dalin, from A Cup of Chicken Soup for the Soul, Copyright 1996 by Jack Canfield, Mark Victor Hansen & Barry Spilchuk 
~~~~~~~ THIS & THAT:
Do you realize that the only time in our lives when we like to get old is when we're kids? If you're less than 10 years old, you're so excited about aging that you think in fractions. How old are you? "I'm four and a half" You're never 36 and a half. . . but you're four and a half going on five!
That's the key. You get into your teens, now they can't hold you back. You jump to the next number. How old are you? "I'm gonna be 16." You could be 12, but you're gonna be 16.
And then the greatest day of your life happens... you become 21. Even the words sound like a ceremony. . . you 'become' 21. . . "Yes!"
But then you turn 30. . . ooohhh what happened there? Makes you sound like bad milk. . . He turned, so we had to throw him out. There's no fun now.
What's wrong? What changed? You 'become' 21, you 'turn' 30, then you're 'pushing' 40. . . stay over there, it's all slipping away. . .
Then you 'reach' 50 and 'make it' to 60. . . (You didn't think you'd make it!)
So you become 21, you turn 30, you're pushing 40, you reach 50, you make it to 60. . . then you build up so much speed you hit 70!
And after that, it's a day by day thing. From there you hit Wednesday, then Thursday. You get into your 80's, you hit lunchtime. You turn 4:30. My grandmother won't even buy green bananas. (It's an investment you know, and maybe a bad one.)
And it doesn't end there. . . into the 90's you start going backwards. "I was just 92."
Finally a strange thing happens: If you make it over 100, you become a little kid again and say, "I'm 100 and a half." 
~~~~~~~ KEEP SMILING:
While working on a sermon the pastor heard a knock at his office door. "Come in," he invited.
A contrite-looking man in threadbare clothes came in, pulling a large pig on a rope. . "Can I talk to you for a minute?" asked the man with his hat in his hand. Wordlessly, the pastor indicated the chair and the man sat down in it gingerly. The pig proceeded to sniff around the office. With one eye on the animal and one on the man, the pastor folded his hands on his desk and leaned forward, curious to hear the fellow's story. "What can I do for you?"
"My family is hungry," started the man. "So I stole this pig. But I feel that I have sinned. Would you please take it?"
"Certainly not," said the minister.
"Then what should I do with it?" asked the man.
"Give it back to the man you stole it from, of course!" the pastor explained.
"I offered it to him, but he refused to take it. Now what should I do?"
"In that case," the minister said, "It would be all right for you to keep it and feed your family."
That seemed to settle things as far as the man was concerned. "Thank you for your help, sir." With a lighter step, he walked out of the office, leading the pig on the rope behind him.
It was only later that afternoon when the minister returned home, that he discovered that somebody had stolen his prize pig! 
In 1832, French engineer Ferdinand Marie de Lesseps was traveling on the Mediterranean Sea. One of the passengers on the ship he was on came down with a contagious disease and the ship was quarantined. Lesseps became very frustrated. To help kill time he read the memoirs of Charles le Pere who had considered the feasibility of building a canal from the Mediterranean to the Red Sea. In 1869 the Suez Canal was completed. It was constructed following the design by and under the leadership of de Lesseps. It was during that quarantine thirty-seven years earlier that the plan for the Suez Canal was germinated and conceived by de Lesseps. 
 (Funny-Bone http://www.spunge.org/funny- bone)
 (Chicken Soup for the Soul http://www.soupserver.com/)
 (Humor Break http://www.dreamhaven.org/~morph/jokes/)
 (Patty Patterson)
 (Daily Encounter http://www.gospelcom.net/actsi/daily/)