I continue to be amazed at the timing of impactful messages on my life. Some messages are repeats that reinforce the direction of my spiritual compass. Others are meant to change my heart and challenge me.

Below is a story from today’s sermon. It talked about happiness and serving others. Very appropriate given the mission trip we just all returned from.

It was great seeing my fellow teammates at church today too. I really bonded with them and even though it was very hard work, we enjoyed ourselves. I would go back with each of them in a heartbeat. If they are reading this, thank you to each of you for the person you are and the person you shared with me during that experience.

Sermon story —–

Marion Preminger stumbled upon it and wrote about where lasting happiness is to be found in her autobiography ALL I WANT IS EVERYTHING. Born in Hungary in 1913, Marion was raised in a castle, surrounded by wealth, servants and the notoriety of an aristocratic upbringing.

At a Viennese ball, she met a handsome young man, the son of an Italian doctor. They rushed into a marriage that lasted only a year.

She returned to Vienna to embark on a career of acting. There she fell in love with the German director Otto Preminger. They married and she followed him to America where he began a promising career as a Hollywood movie director. But her new Hollywood lifestyle could not sustain her marriage and Preminger eventually divorced her.

Marion returned to Europe to live the life of a Parisian socialite until 1948. Then everything changed when she read that Dr. Albert Schweitzer was visiting Europe from his home in Africa. She determined to meet with the notable missionary doctor.

She first encountered Schweitzer doing one of the things he loved to do best while visiting Europe — playing a church organ for his own enjoyment. He invited her to dine with him. After the meal, Marion knew she had finally found what she’d been looking for. She accompanied Schweitzer every day during the remainder of his European visit. He invited to come back to Africa with him and work as an untrained staff member in the Lamberene hospital.

She left her life of status and ease and moved to Africa. There…the girl who was raised like a princess became a servant. She changed bandages, bathed bodies and fed lepers. She gave her life away to the poor, and because of it, found the happiness she’d craved for so long.

It was Albert Schweitzer who asserted, “One thing I know: The only ones among you who will be really happy are those who will have sought and found how to serve.”

However, wherever and whomever you choose to help is unimportant. There are those in need everywhere. But when you figure out how to help other people, you’ll have also learned how to be happy for lifetime.

How true! In looking up this story, I also ran across this :

Someone said this about happiness:

To be happy for an hour — take a nap.
To be happy for a day — go shopping.
To be happy for a week — take a vacation.
To be happy for a month — get married.
To be happy for a year — inherit a fortune.
To be happy for a lifetime — help others.

Go be happy! I’ll let you pick how long you want to be happy.

…..Dan at aslowerpace dot net

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