Finish #93 – The Christmas Box

DSCN2012.JPG“Holiday Happiness Essential”: Read a Christmas book. (I added that one to my list after my last post.)

Finish #93 is The Christmas Box by Richard Paul Evans. This was the first book I’ve read by him. I was surprised to see that he’d written so many when I was browsing the shelves at the library. Not only was this book a quick read, it was also a very interesting and thought provoking story.

Quoting from the story, “She knew that in my quest for success in this world I had been trading diamonds for stones.” What a great lesson that so many of us need to learn. You’ll have to read the book to understand the context.

I will admit that I often struggle with the desire to be “successful” in the eyes of my peers. These struggles are often intensified after exposure to one or two particularly annoying people in my life and whenever I read any comments online between the two sides of the Mommy Wars. But what does it mean to be “successful?” Am I only successful if I make a lot of money and have a great job? In the eyes of the world, yes, I would only be successful if I make a lot of money, have a great job, cure cancer in my spare time, and travel to foreign countries to do good deeds. (Unless you’re Mother Theresa. Then poor is okay.) But what would I end up with in the end? I might be remembered for a few years after my death, but then the world would forget me (unless I was Mother Theresa) and move on to the next great person. Would I make it into the history books, immortalized for all time, doomed to pester high school students as one more fact they’ll be forced to regurgitate on an exam? Probably not. Geez, some people get elected President and barely get a mention.

So what should we be striving for? What kind of success? I’m going to go for the kind of success that makes me happy, fulfills me, and is good for my family. What that looks like for me is going to be vastly different than what that looks like for you or anyone else. And if I never make it into a history book or do something great in the eyes of my peers…who cares! My family got the best of me, and giving them my best makes me FEEL successful.


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