Sunday’s Wisdom #5: Not a Failure

“Dear George,
Remember no man is a failure who has friends.
Thanks for the wings!
Love,
Clarence.”
-Note from Clarence to George Bailey
It’s a Wonderful Life

At this time of thanksgiving and joy, I figure this quote from a classic Christmas movie fits best.

George Bailey is a man who has lived his entire life in service to others, yet he believes he has no friends. In a moment of weakness, when all the worst things seem to be happening to him, and he is on the verge of losing everything he holds most dear, he considers even taking his life. But then he is given the chance to see what good he’s done with his small, humble life. He has amounted to very little in the eyes of the world, but he has built homes, improved lives, and minimized the corrupting influence of a mean, old, greedy man, not to mention created a beautiful family with his beloved wife and four children. With a clear perspective, he gains a renewed will to live, whatever the hardships. And finally, the many, many friends he never realized he had, the people who owe lives and happiness to him, gather round him and offer everything they can to help the man who helped them.

Money, mansions, fame, fortune, the trappings of this world, all of these are worthless in the end. What matters is friends. Not superficial acquaintances, but true, loyal friends. Friends who will help you, because they know you would help them. Bonds such as these are forged only with an open heart, a humble spirit, and a life lived for others instead of oneself.

Such is the essence of a truly good life.

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