Saturday, January 31, 2009


Auto rotating product display case - “If the Earth could be made to rotate twice as fast, managers would get twice as much done. If the Earth could be made to rotate twenty times as fast, everyone else would get twice as much done since all the managers would fly off.”

Rabbi Harold Kushner tells a wonderful story about a bright young man who was a sophomore Stanford pre-med student. To reward him for having done so well in school, his parents gave him a trip to the Asia for the summer.

While there he met a guru who said to him, "Don't you see how you are poisoning your soul with this success-oriented way of life? Your idea of happiness is to stay up all night studying for an exam so you can get a better grade than your best friend. Your idea of a good marriage is not to find the woman who will make you whole, but to win the girl that everyone else wants.

"That's not how people are supposed to live," the sage admonished. "Give it up; come join us in an atmosphere where we all share and love each other."

The young man had completed four years at a competitive high school to get into Stanford, plus two years of pre-med courses at the university. He was ripe for this sort of approach. He called his parents from Tokyo and told them he would not be coming home. He was dropping out of school to live in an ashram (a spiritual retreat).

Six months later, his parents got this letter from him:

"Dear Mom and Dad,

I know you weren't happy with the decision I made last summer, but I want to tell you how happy it has made me. For the first time in my life, I am at peace. Here there is no competing, no hustling, no trying to get ahead of anyone else. Here we are all equal, and we all share. This way of life is so much in harmony with the inner essence of my soul that in only six months I've become the number two disciple in the entire ashram, and I think I can be number one by June!"

What this young man didn't get is that it's not always about competition and achievement -- doing more and doing it faster than anyone else. It's not HOW you do it; it is WHAT you do. Success is more about doing the RIGHT thing. Miss that, and nothing else matters.

Someone put it like this: "I spent my life frantically climbing the ladder of success. When I got to the top I realized it was leaning against the wrong building." Even if he got to the top first, it made no difference. There is no merit in being first to arrive at the wrong place.

Do you know what one difference between efficient and effective is? One who is efficient does the thing in the best possible way; one who is effective does the best possible thing. More important than efficiency is effectiveness. More important than climbing highest is climbing the right ladder.

Blessed are those who accomplish.. .the right thing. Blessed are those who scale the mountain and, whether or not they even make it to the top, they know they chose the right path. These people will have found success.

From Lifesupport.

Lifesigns Life Quotes

Thursday, January 29, 2009


White private boat docked at the riverside - “When the tides of life turn against you and the current upsets your boat, don't waste those tears on what might have been, just lie on your back and float.”

It has been said that the amount of sleep required by the average person is just five minutes more! Too many of us are chronically sleep-deprived. Late to bed and early to rise. And it costs us dearly.

Dr. Dean Ornish wrote a bestselling book called STRESS, DIET AND YOUR HEART. It was a good book. In it he talks about how to manage stress, how diet promotes a health life and why proper stress management and good diet affects ones heart.

He should have been on top of the world. He had just turned forty. He was fit and healthy. STRESS, DIET AND YOUR HEART soared to the top of The New York Times bestseller list. So what was the problem? Where was the joy and fulfillment he so desperately wanted?

He was working more than 80 hours a week, what with speaking, promoting his book and working, and he was exhausted. A wake-up call came in a conversation with a flight attendant. Ornish had just barely made it in time for his flight and he collapsed into his seat. A flight attendant noticed his frazzled state. She remarked, "You look harried."

"I feel harried," he admitted.

The attendant tried to encourage him. She said, "I just read a book that might help! She said she highly recommended it. It was a book called STRESS, DIET AND YOUR HEART. She told him that it had some wonderful stress-management techniques that he might try.

At that point Dr. Ornish decided to make the changes he so desperately needed.

(From "Why Being Happy Keeps You Healthy," by Dean Ornish, M.D., "Family Circle," April 1, 1998)

We need lots of rest. These bodies are beautiful creations. They run practically on peanuts and, when well cared for, they can serve us splendidly for many years. But when neglected they run down like an unwound clock.

Sir John Lubbock once said this about relaxation: "Rest is not idleness, and to lie sometimes on the grass on a summer day listening to the murmur of water, or watching the clouds float across the sky, is hardly a waste of time."

Is it time to rest?

From Lifesupport.

Lifesigns Life Quotes

Tuesday, January 27, 2009


Crowded shopping experience - “It is easy in the world to live after the world's opinions; it is easy in solitude to live after your own; but the great man is he who in the midst of the crowd keeps with perfect sweetness the independence of solitude

Someone noted that their life and their bank both have something in common - they get out of them about as much as they put in. Which, as far as my bank is concerned, isn't much! But it means I can get a great deal of joy and satisfaction out of life if I am careful about what I put into living.

Gary Player for years was a great competitor in national and international golf tournaments. People constantly said to him, "I'd give anything if I could hit a golf ball like you."

Upon hearing that comment one day, Player responded impatiently: "No, you wouldn't. You'd do anything to hit a golf ball like me, if it were easy! Do your know what you have to do to hit a golf ball like me? You've got to get up at 5:00 every morning, go out to the golf course, and hit a thousand golf balls! Your hands start bleeding, and you walk to the clubhouse and wash the blood off your hands, slap a bandage on it, and go out and hit another thousand golf balls! That is what it takes to hit a golf ball like me!"

His goal was to be at the top of his sport. That lofty dream requires practice, practice and more practice. If your desire, on the other hand, is to excel at living - to give and receive love, to experience joy and to develop fulfilling relationships - then how much of you will you put into your dream? These things, too, are possible with practice.

Do you actually practice love, even when you don't feel like it? Do you practice finding joy even when you're unhappy? Do you work at difficult relationships? It is not always easy, but the payoff is worth it!

From Lifesupport.

Lifesigns Life Quotes

Sunday, January 25, 2009


Wooden school desks - “Leadership is a word and a concept that has been more argued than almost any other I know. I am not one of the desk-pounding types that likes to stick out his jaw and look like he is bossing the show. I would far rather get behind and, recognizing the frailties and the requirements of human nature, would rather try to persuade a man to go along, because once I have persuaded him, he will stick. If I scare him, he will stay just as long as he is scared, and then he is gone.”

Here are three simple steps to make things happen in your life:

DO IT. Dr. Norman Vincent Peale put it like this: "Action is a great restorer and builder of confidence. Inaction is not only the result, but the cause, of fear. Perhaps the action you take will be successful; perhaps different action or adjustments will have to follow. But any action is better than no action at all."

If you wait until you have all the facts or until you know how you will handle every possible challenge that comes along, you'll never get started. Begin somewhere. You can't accomplish anything until you begin. Do it.

DO IT RIGHT. One poet put it like this:
"If a task is once begun,
never leave until it's done.
Be the labor great or small,
do it well or not at all."

It's true: if you don't have time to do it right, when will you find time to do it over? Do it right.

DO IT RIGHT NOW. In the Spanish-American War, as the American soldiers were trying to capture San Juan Hill, they were thrown back again and again. The black powder ammunition they were using pinpointed their position for their enemies. As soldier after soldier toppled, the troops began to panic. Up rode Teddy Roosevelt, on a little horse named "Texas," urging his men on. Encouraged by his bravery in exposing himself to the whizzing bullets, the troops began to cheer their commander.

"Don't cheer, men," Roosevelt called out to them. "Fight! Now's the time to fight!"

There is a time to cheer. A time to reflect. A time to plan. A time to reminisce. But there is also a time to act. Those who accomplish anything worthwhile know that time is now.

Do it. Do it right. Do it right now. These are three simple steps to success.

From Lifesupport.

Lifesigns Life Quotes

Friday, January 23, 2009


Scenic beach view with gentle waves - “I walked beside the evening sea and dreamed a dream that could not be; the waves that plunged along the shore said only: "Dreamer, dream no more!”

An aging man was walking with his friend. He said, "I'm a walking economy."

"How so?" the friend replied.

He lamented, "My hair line is in recession, my stomach is a victim of inflation, and both of these together are putting me into a deep depression!"

We can't help but grow older physically, but we can stay young in other ways. Though I cannot credit the original author, I think the following piece, sent in by a reader, is worth repeating. Do you want to stay young?

How to Stay Young

1. Throw out nonessential numbers. This includes age, weight and height. Let the doctor worry about them. That is why you pay him/her.

2. Keep only cheerful friends. The grouches pull you down.

3. Keep learning. Learn more about the computer, crafts, gardening, whatever. Never let the brain idle. "An idle mind is the devil's workshop." The devil's name is Alzheimer's Disease.

4. Enjoy the simple things. When the children are young, that is all that you can afford. When they are in college, that is all that you can afford. When you are on retirement, that is all that you can afford!

5. Laugh often, long and loud. Laugh until you gasp for breath. Laugh so much that you can be tracked in the store by your distinctive laughter.

6. The tears happen. Endure, grieve, and move on. The only person who is with us our entire life, is ourselves. Be alive while you are alive, don't put out a mailbox on the highway of death and just wait in residence for your mail.

7. Surround yourself with what you love, whether it is family, pets, keepsakes, music, plants, hobbies, whatever. Your home is your refuge.

8. Cherish your health. If it is good, preserve it. If it is unstable, improve it. If it is beyond what you can improve, get help.

9. Don't take guilt trips. Go to the mall, the next county, a foreign country, but not to guilt country.

10. At every opportunity, tell the people you love that you love them.

From Lifesupport.

Lifesigns Life Quotes

Wednesday, January 21, 2009


Cheesy pizza toppings - “When the moon hits your eye like a big pizza pie, that's amore”

Work sometimes has a bad reputation in our world. But there is something worse than work, and that is boredom. At least that is what Drs. Kathryn Rost and G. Richard Smith of the University of Arkansas say. After analyzing the mental health of heart attack survivors, they concluded that one factor which greatly reduced the chances of depression was going back to work.

And why not? At work we are often around friends, and people with strong relationships will almost always fare better mentally. But we humans also need to be useful and productive!

Arthur Kroeger wrote in Quote magazine (August 1994) that his brother sometimes visited an Anabaptist colony in southern Alberta, Canada. During one visit he asked leaders how they dealt with the problem of misbehavior - when people rebelled against the colony's strict rules. He was told that these people were first asked to correct their behavior. If they did not respond, they would be given a stern "talking to."

"But what do you do when all else fails, when somebody stubbornly refuses to behave?" he pressed.

"Ah," came the reply, "if it comes to that, then we don't give him anything to do."

The ultimate punishment - don't give them any work! If that doesn't sound so bad, just ask those who are unemployed how they feel about not working....

It has been wisely said, "The Lord didn't burden us with work, but rather blessed us with it." We need to be busy and productive.

Whatever it is you do to make a living - be grateful. Those long hours and that feeling of exhaustion at the end of the day come from having something useful to do. Your work is a gift. You are blessed.

From Lifesupport.

Lifesigns Life Quotes

Monday, January 19, 2009


Expo products display booths - “One of the surest evidences of friendship that one individual can display to another is telling him gently of a fault. If any other can excel it, it is listening to such a disclosure with gratitude, and amending the error.”

Do you dread the future? Or will you warmly welcome it as you would a new friend?

Senator Hubert Humphrey, a man with an indomitable zest for living, once talked about the "good old days." He said, "They were never that good, believe me. The good new days are today, and better days are coming tomorrow. Our greatest songs are still unsung."

What a marvelous spirit! Our greatest songs are still unsung! Quite a different spirit is found in a business magazine ad that pictures a newborn baby with the caption: "Only 22,463 days until retirement." The ad is cute, but it picks up on a spirit of our day. It is a spirit of worry and anxiety. It is a spirit that tells us, "You don't know what the future holds! It is likely to be bleak; even disastrous! You can never be too careful!" You know what spirit I mean.

I have always believed in the future. And I will look forward to it with great anticipation. Why shouldn't I make friends with the future? After all, I intend to spend the rest of my life there!

I am intrigued by a story about a bishop back in the 1870s. The bishop had charge of a small denominational college. Annually, he visited the school and stayed in the home of the president.

The bishop was a narrow thinker with a dim view of the future. He told the school president during one of those visits that everything that could be invented had already been invented.

The administrator disagreed. "In 50 years," he contested, "people will learn to fly like birds."

That kind of talk greatly disturbed the bishop. "Flight is reserved for birds and angels," he said emphatically, "and you, sir, are guilty of blasphemy!"

The name of the bishop was Milton Wright. That name may not have a great deal of meaning to you, but something else will. You see, back at home, this clergyman had two enthusiastic sons - Orville and Wilbur - who believed that our greatest songs were still unsung! The rest of the story is one of an enthusiastic belief in tomorrow. You know how it ends.

Do you believe that your greatest songs are still unsung? Will you joyously welcome tomorrow, and all the tomorrows to come? Supported by those we hold dear and under girded by faith, we, too, can share an enthusiastic belief in tomorrow!

From Lifesupport.

Lifesigns Life Quotes

Saturday, January 17, 2009


Blue led turbine fan casing - “You don't have to travel around the world to understand that the sky is blue everywhere

I'm told the story is true: A woman was giving birth to a baby in an elevator at a hospital. When she complained about the location, a nurse said, "Why, this isn't so bad; last year a woman delivered her baby out on the front lawn."

"Yes," said the woman on the floor, "that was me, too."

Who said, "If I didn't have bad luck I wouldn't have any luck at all?"

But on the other hand, not all "bad luck" should be considered a bad thing! Like someone said, "When life gives you a kick, let it kick you forward."

In the 1920s, Ernest Hemingway learned something about "bad luck" and getting kicked by life. He was struggling to make his mark as an author when disaster struck. He lost a suitcase containing all his manuscripts -- many stories he'd polished to jewel-like perfection -- which he'd been planning to publish in a book.

According to Denis Waitley in his book Empires of the Mind (William Morrow and Company, Inc., 1995), the devastated Hemingway couldn't conceive of redoing his work. All those months of arduous writing were simply wasted.

He lamented his predicament to friend and poet Ezra Pound who called it a stroke of good fortune! Pound assured Hemingway that when he rewrote the stories, he would forget the weak parts; only the best material would reappear. He encouraged the aspiring author to start over with a sense of optimism and confidence. Hemingway did rewrite the stories and eventually became a major figure in American literature.

Don't pray for fewer problems; pray for more skills. Don't ask for smaller challenges; ask for greater wisdom. Don't look for an easy way out; look for the best possible outcome.

When life gives you a kick, let it kick you forward.

From Lifesupport.

Lifesigns Life Quotes

Thursday, January 15, 2009


Tiger the cat sleeping on the bench - “There is always something to do. There are hungry people to feed, naked people to clothe, sick people to comfort and make well. And while I don't expect you to save the world I do think it's not asking too much for you to love those with whom you sleep, share the happiness of those whom you call friend, engage those among you who are visionary and remove from your live those who offer you depression, despair and disrespect.”

Do you know what is the hardest instrument in the orchestra to play? The hardest instrument to play is second fiddle. While all the rest of the instruments have their own sections, the violins are divided into two parts - "first" and "second" violins.

First violins are often the stars of the show. They get the melody lines. They get to show off. They sit next to the audience.

Back behind, where they are hard to see, are the second violins. They play a supporting role. They play harmony to the first violins. Theirs is a service role. Their job is to round out the sound of the other instruments. They serve the orchestra. They do what is not glamorous so that the whole will be beautiful. Without the second violins, the orchestra would sound incomplete.

You know what the hardest role to play in life is? Second fiddle. To play second fiddle is to play a supporting role for someone else. And it is sometimes a service role; doing what is not glamorous, usually behind the scenes, so that the whole can be more beautiful.

The late Leo Buscaglia, that effervescent educator, speaker, author, and lover of life, used to tell his university students that there is a world out there dying to be loved! He challenged his students to love and often told them that serving others is the way they can find such things as happiness and joy.

He sometimes told about Joel. Leo got Joel hooked on serving. He took him to a nursing home and said, "You see that woman sitting over there? I want you to go and introduce yourself to her."

Joel was not looking forward to his nursing home visit. But he nevertheless went to the stranger and introduced himself. She looked at him skeptically and asked, "Are you one of my relatives?"

Joel answered, "No, I'm not."

And she said, "Good. I hate my relatives. Sit down, son, and talk to me." He did and they talked.

He went back the next week. And the next. They developed a close friendship and Joel soon looked forward to his visits. He learned something about the joy of serving. About working behind the scenes. About playing second fiddle. And he made one woman's world a little more beautiful.

From Lifesupport.

Lifesigns Life Quotes

Wednesday, January 14, 2009


This is a special post for my good friend Borneo Falcon who has been covering the city of Miri on his blog Borneotips. We have known each other since our college days and he is a fantastic guy. You can see his wonderful pictures on Miri on Borneotips but this is the only place where you can see exclusive behind the scenes photos of him in action. And in case you are wondering ladies, he is a happily married man ;).
Borneo Falcon positioning himself on the edge to capture a good shot of the Miri seahorse light beacon.
Borneo Falcon doing his straight on shot on the seahorse statue.
Borneo Falcon practicing his macro photography skills on some closeups on live sea shells by the beach.
Borneo Falcon bracing direct sunlight (notice the squinting in his eyes) to capture his best shot of the sun, the sky and the sea.
Borneo Falcon steadying his trusty camera with both hands (so that he won't mess up and get blurry images) to capture the scenic view of Miri city on top of the Petronas Museum rooftop balcony.
Borneo Falcon documenting each and every mural of historical facts on how Miri got started as an oil town.
Borneo Falcon checking his feet so he has firm grounding before taking pictures of Miri's first oil well, the Grand old Lady.
Borneo Falcon taking pictures of the memorial plaque where signatures of local politicians can be seen officializing the Grand Old Lady site.

I hope you have enjoyed the exclusive coverage of Borneo Falcon behind the scenes in getting photos for his blog Borneotips. For those who got directed here from Borneotips, do come back Lifesigns Life Quotes and also visit My Love For Life Review.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009


Budget hotel wall switches - “If you believe you can, you probably can. If you believe you won't, you most assuredly won't. Belief is the ignition switch that gets you off the launching pad.”

Some people never need help. One man caught his foot in railroad tracks. He tried to pull it out, but his efforts only seemed to make matters worse.

He heard a noise and turned around to see a train coming. In a panic he prayed, "Dear God, please get my foot out of these tracks and I'll stop my heavy drinking and smoking!"

Nothing happened. He was still stuck, and the train showed no sign of slowing.

So he prayed again, "Oh, Lord, please get my foot out and I'll stop drinking and smoking and carousing and cussing!"

Still nothing. He tugged and pulled as the train bore down. In sheer desperation, he pled for help a final time. "Lord, please, if you get my foot out of the tracks, I'll do anything! I'll ... I'll ... I'll become a minister!

Suddenly his foot shot out of the tracks and he got up and dusted himself off as the train whizzed by. Then he looked toward Heaven and said, "Never, mind, Lord, I got it out myself."

Some people seemingly never need help from anyone. They rarely call on friends or even family to lend a hand. They seldom, if ever, confide in a good listener. They seem to believe they should be completely self sufficient; that needing assistance is an unwelcome weakness.

But others find great value in occasionally asking for assistance, and in offering it, too. Needing help, even once in a while, reminds them that they were not meant to journey this life alone. It is a group outing, not a private experience.

Those who find help when they need it are fortunate. But those who give help generously are the most fortunate of all. Few experiences can produce a sense of joy and satisfaction like that of truly easing the burden of another human being, with no thought of return. Fact is... when we help someone else, we can hardly help but be happy. At those magical times we may wonder who really helped whom!

From Lifesupport.

Lifesigns Life Quotes

Sunday, January 11, 2009


Decorated wedding vehicle - “A wedding anniversary is the celebration of love, trust, partnership, tolerance and tenacity. The order varies for any given year.”

An old poem by Richard Armour makes a good point:

The bride, white of hair, is stooped over her cane
Her faltering footsteps need guiding.
While down the church aisle, with wan toothless smile,
The groom in a wheelchair comes riding.
And who is this elderly couple you ask?
You'll find, when you've closely explored it,
That here is that rare, most conservative pair,
Who waited 'til they could afford it.

Are you ever afraid to take a risk? Afraid to commit because of an uncertain future? Afraid of failing? Not that anyone would wait an entire life before taking a chance on marriage, but do you tend to wait until all possible risks are minimized before setting out in a new direction?

Though caution and common sense are certainly important, sometimes a risk is called for. As the late William Arthur Ward wisely said:

To laugh is to risk appearing a fool.
To weep is to risk appearing sentimental.
To reach out for another is to risk involvement.
To expose feelings is to risk revealing your true self.
To place you ideas, your dreams, before a crowd
is to risk rejection.
To love is to risk not being loved in return.
To live is to risk dying.
To hope is to risk disappointment.
To try is to risk failure.
But risks must be taken, because the greatest hazard
in life is to risk nothing.
Those who risk nothing, do nothing, have nothing,
and become nothing.
They may avoid present suffering and sorrow, but they
will not learn, feel, change, grow, love, or live.
Chained by their fear, they are slaves who have forfeited
their freedom.
Only a person who risks is free.
The pessimist complains about the wind;
The optimist expects it to change;
And the realist adjusts the sails.

Is fear preventing you from taking a necessary risk today?

From Lifesupport.

Lifesigns Life Quotes

Friday, January 9, 2009


Detailed wall map on display - “Whatever course you decide upon, there is always someone to tell you that you are wrong. There are always difficulties arising which tempt you to believe that your critics are right. To map out a course of action and follow it to an end requires courage.”

Many years ago Bertrand Russell, the English philosopher and mathematician, was imprisoned for opposing World War I. "When I reported to the warder," Russell said, "he asked me the customary questions - name, age, place of residence. Then he inquired, "Religious affiliation? "

Russell replied, "Agnostic."

The poor man looked up. "How do you spell that?"

He spelled it for him. The warder wrote the word carefully on the admission form, then sighed, "Oh, well; there are a great many sects, but I suppose they all worship the same God."

I'm sure Russell could not help but chuckle.

It is true, however, that there exist many spiritual paths. The world has always teemed with a wide variety of spiritual thought and many differing journeys of the heart. But too often the world has used these differences as a weapon. How much agony has been wrought by what should be a thing of beauty - religious passion?

According to historian Karen Armstrong in THE HISTORY OF ISLAM, the prophet Mohammed launched a "peace offensive" toward the end of his life that unified people in ways the world had never before seen. Judaism looks toward the coming of the "Prince of Peace," and Christianity teaches that followers of Jesus "turn the other cheek." Likewise, the great Eastern religions have practiced tolerance of others for centuries.

An old Jewish story tells of a rabbi who asked his disciples, "How do you know when the night is giving way and the morning is coming?"

One of the disciples stood and said, "Teacher, won't you know that night is fading when, through the dim light, you can see an animal and recognize whether it is a sheep or a dog?"

The rabbi answered, "No."

"Rabbi," asked another. "Won't you know that the dawn is coming when you can see clearly enough to distinguish whether a tree is a fig or an olive?"

"No," responded the teacher. "You'll know that the night has passed when you can look at any man and any woman and discern that you are looking at a brother or a sister. Until you can see with that clarity, the night will always be with us."

Today, more than ever, may we learn to see that clearly.

From Lifesupport.

Lifesigns Life Quotes

Wednesday, January 7, 2009


Spiral lucky green plant - “Some luck lies in not getting what you thought you wanted but getting what you have, which once you have got it you may be smart enough to see is what you would have wanted had you known.”

Though I have never seen it, I'm told that the Niagara River has a couple of interesting signs upstream of the famous falls. There is one by the side of the river visible to daredevil boaters that reads, "Do you have an anchor?" Then just downstream is a second sign that says, "Do you know how to use it?"

"Do you have an anchor?" I have found that a solid anchor is indispensable to one who intends to live life fully. To have an anchor is to be centered and well-grounded. It is to have a vital spiritual base.

"Do you know how to use it?" For no amount of faith is enough if it is not used.

We all come to what has been described as the "Red Sea place" in our lives. That is the place where there is no way back and no way around. We have to go through.

You know the places I mean . We find ourselves up against a critical loss, an irreversible setback or a course of action that cannot be changed. There is no way back and no way around. We have to go through.

Even a small ship can weather major storms if it has an anchor. But it is likely to be tossed about and even capsized if the anchor is not used.

What will you do when you get to the next "Red Sea place" in your life? Do you have an anchor? Do you know how to use it?

From Lifesupport.

Lifesigns Life Quotes

Monday, January 5, 2009


Tables and chairs at the food court - “Worry is like a rocking chair--it gives you something to do but it doesn't get you anywhere.”

A little boy said to his father, "Let's play darts. I'll throw the darts and you say, `Wonderful!' "

Here is a boy who was not afraid to ask for the encouragement he needs. Maybe we all have something to learn from him!

Inspirational author and educator, Fr. Brian Cavanaugh, relates a story about the devastating effects of discouragement. Dante Gabriel Rossetti, the famous 19th Century poet and artist, was once approached by an elderly man who asked him to look at a few of his sketches and drawings. The gentleman wanted to know if the artist thought they were of any value.

As gently as possible, Rossetti told the man that the sketches were of no value and showed little talent. He apologized for the harsh assessment but said that he believed he should be honest.

The visitor was disappointed but asked the artist if he could take a look at just a few more, which were all done by a young art student. Rossetti looked over the second batch of sketches and immediately became enthusiastic over the talent they revealed. "These," he said, "oh, these are good." He went on to say that the young student shows much promise and should be given every help and encouragement, as he may have a great future if he will study and work hard.

The old man was deeply moved. Rossetti asked, "Who is this fine, young artist? Your son?"

"No," replied the visitor sadly. "It is I - forty years ago. If only I had heard your praise then. For you see, I became discouraged and gave up too soon."

Mother Teresa wisely said, "Kind words can be short and easy to speak, but their echoes are truly endless." Sometimes it may be enough to just say, "Wonderful!"

From Lifesupport.

Lifesigns Life Quotes

Saturday, January 3, 2009


Miniature offshore vessel model - “People seldom improve when they have no other model but themselves to copy after

I like to take long walks in the cemetery. I've noticed something about the hundreds of people beneath the cemetery ground. None of them kept their bodies! They each were given a body to use -- some for a short time and some for many years. But they all gave those bodies up.

And that is true with their things, too. They came into the world with nothing and they left the things of this world behind. Everything. Their bodies; their money; their responsibilities; their families; and, all of their things!

An old story tells of a grandmother and her grandson walking the beach. The little boy spotted a dead pelican in the sand. "What happened to that bird?" he asked.

"That pelican died and went to heaven to be with God," explained his grandmother, in hopes of soothing the child.

Still puzzled, he asked, "Well, why did God throw him back?"

I rented a car recently. The rental papers indicated that the car was "dented all over." I looked closely and, sure enough, it was covered with little, round dents! Every door, the hood, the roof and the trunk were affected. The car looked as if it had been caught in a severe hail storm.

The damage was only visible upon close inspection, so it didn't particularly bother me that it was dented. I drove the vehicle for a few days and returned it to the rental agency. It wasn't my car. I knew I couldn't keep it if I wanted to.

Our bodies are like loaner vehicles. They are ours to use, but not ours to keep. We must care for them and maintain them, for the better shape they are in, the longer we may borrow them. But we will someday turn them back in. We were fortunate enough to be given bodies to use for a while, but sometime they will become sick, damaged or simply worn out, and we will need to return them.

This simple concept is one of the most transforming, comforting and freeing truths I have come to know. I have been given the extraordinary gift of a body to use for a season, and a few things of this world to enjoy for a time. But NONE of these are mine to keep. Therefore, I will guard against becoming too attached, for I know I must give it all up someday.

I can live freed from unnecessary worry about myself. It's all on loan. Mine to use well and enjoy for a time. And then, when I return it all, I will give it back in gratitude and joy, thankful that I even got to use it at all!

From Lifesupport.

Lifesigns Life Quotes

Thursday, January 1, 2009


Antique clock piece (New Year's Day) - “Be at war with your vices, at peace with your neighbors, and let every new year find you a better man.”

Not long ago a commercial airliner landed at New York's JFK Airport. The captain was new to the New York run and steered the jet off the runway, onto the taxiway and stopped. Slowly he began taxiing. First he turned the nose of the aircraft to the right. Then he turned it to the left. Then he turned the plane completely around.

Finally, over the public-address system, a confused voice asked, "Does anyone know where Gate 25 is?" Perhaps if he just turned around enough times he would come out right!

Deciding to turn, though, is something we often have to do if we are to live fully and live well! For each of us knows what it is to head the wrong direction in life; and we also know how relieved we feel to turn around again.

Do you remember the old Shaker hymn, written by Joseph Brackett, Jr. over 150 years ago?

'Tis the gift to be simple,
'tis the gift to be free,
'tis the gift to come down where you ought to be,
And when we find ourselves in the place just right,
It will be in the valley of love and delight.

When true simplicity is gained,
To bow and to bend we shan't be ashamed.
To turn, turn will be our delight,
'Til by turning, turning we come round right

Turning. I believe it is one of the most hopeful words in our
language. We human beings, by turning, can do something about the
course we've taken. We may not be able to change what we've
already done; and we may not be able to fully escape the
consequences of past choices. But we need not continue in the
same, destructive path. We can turn. We can find our way again!

Are you headed the wrong direction? Don't give can always start over. You can always turn. And turn again...and again...until you come out right.

From Lifesupport.

Lifesigns Life Quotes


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