Wednesday, 25 April 2012
Perchance to dream . . .
Have you ever dreamt about what you would do if you suddenly came into a lot of money?? I sometimes do. There have been HUGE European lottery offerings over here in recent years, sometimes as high as 170 million pounds, which is mind boggling. How could you even put a dent in that kind of money? I am sure it would be earning interest faster than you could spend it. I don't really buy lottery tickets . . . so I don't really have much of a chance of winning, but that doesn't stop me for dreaming about what I could do with that kind of money if I ever had it. It doesn't hurt anyone and hasn't cost me a penny.
First of all I like to think that everyone in our families would never have to worry about money ever again. All the children's student loans and mortgages would be paid off and decent new family cars would be purchased for each one. Trust funds for the grand children's educations would be set up, and a hefty amount of savings deposited into each family account for a rainy day. Not enough that they would never have to work again . . . working teaches us so much and provides important emotional and spiritual growth . . . but they would be financially secure.
Then there are my parents, brother, sister, Todd's brother and his family. It goes without saying that they would be provided for as well in a reasonable way, with no mortgages, new cards, etc. I would build my parents a retirement home, just the right size, with everything on one level, all the mod cons, and with someone to come in and clean for my mom each week. A new car and a driver to take them wherever they needed to go each week. I'd love to have them come and live with me . . . but whist my dad would probably be up for it . . . my mom is just stubborn enough to want nothing to change . . .
Then there are things I would love to do to make a difference in the world. I know I could not solve everyone's problems, but I would love to give a sizable chunk to children's charities . . . worthwhile ones which provide good food, clean water, clothing and educations to children that would otherwise never have any of those things. When I was working down South, Todd and I sponsored two children in Africa, a little boy in Ethiopia and a girl in Tanzania and we got so much pleasure from doing so. It broke our hearts to have to give it up when I lost my job and we have never lost the hope that one day we would be able to sponsor some more children.
I am always telling Todd that I would never want to move from where we live right now. I am happy and content here. He, of course would want to immediately move to a big house in the country. Having worked in a big house for all those years, I would never want to really have a big house of my own . . . too much cleaning and space. I could never hire anyone to clean my house. I'd be cleaning it up before they came, and I would never want other people knowing my personal business . . . so I would go for a small house out in the country. I'm sure we would compromise somewhere. I'd also want a new car to drive. A nice compact model, automatic and easy to manoeuvre in and out of spots. Todd . . . he wants a Jaguar. That's a man for you! I think a nice house with about 4 bedrooms (plenty of room for the kids and grand kids etc. when they came to visit) a dining room, family room, utility room, LARGE kitchen and lounge would be fabulous as well as a studio of my very own to play in.
A holiday home would also be nice . . . somewhere warm that we could escape to when the winter winds blew and the rain fell. A place that we could go to with our families from time to time and all relax together.
I'd like to be like the Secret Millionaire and give money anonymously to people who really need it, and deserve it. I would be a bit like that man on the beach throwing starfish back into the sea I think . . . I wouldn't be able to save them all of course . . . but I'd make a difference to each one that I could. What a happy thought that is.
I sometimes look at my husband's back whilst he is bent over working or reading in bed and I think about what a hard life he has had. He was born during WW2 and his father was a window washer. He had to leave school when he was 15. His mother took him downtown to find him a job and he's worked ever since. He's worked really hard through the years as well . . . in shops, on farms etc. some of it quite heavy labour too . . . milking cows at 5 in the morning, shovelling out other people's muck, etc. He only ever very rarely gets a new piece of clothing. All he has to wear, except for the suit we bought new when we got married, has come from charity shops for the most part. I would so love to be able to give him some of the finer things in life. Now that he is in the winter of his life, it would be so nice to spoil him in a variety of ways . . . oh, I guess I do that anyways, as best as I can . . . so it's all good.
At the end of the day . . . we already have all that we need and our lives are very good. We are content and happy with our circumstances. We have love and we have health and we have a good outlook on life from every perspective. We have our faith and the security that it brings to our lives and we have each other, and our little Miztie. Anything else is just icing . . .
I have been lucky enough in my life to have been able to see both sides of the coin. Having worked for the really wealthy, I have been able to observe that personal wealth can become a prison of sorts and a detriment to spiritual and personal growth. Some people have so much that money and possessions become their Gods. Their lives become an exercise in trying to keep what they have, and in trying to get more of it. They never have enough. They are never content, always wanting more . . . never realizing that what they really need, and what would bring them the most joy . . . is something that cannot be purchased . . .
To be happy is easy enough if we forgive ourselves, forgive others, and live with thanksgiving. No self-centred person, no ungrateful soul can ever be happy, much less make anyone else happy. Life is giving, not getting.
~Joseph Fort Newton
It's nice to dream of course . . . but you should never dream so much that your reality becomes tinged with longing and regret. Money cannot buy happiness . . . true joy and happiness comes from being content with what you already have . . . and in serving other's as best as we can, sharing that which we have been so abundantly blessed with . . .
It is in the giving that we really start living . . .
Baking in The English Kitchen today, a delicious Dried Cherry, Apricot and Almond Breakfast Loaf. Fat free and very tasty!
“God expects you to have enough faith and determination and enough trust in Him to keep moving, keep living, keep rejoicing. In fact, He expects you not simply to face the future (that sounds pretty grim and stoic); He expects you to embrace and shape the future--to love it and rejoice in it and delight in your opportunities. God is anxiously waiting for the chance to answer your prayers and fulfill your dreams, just as He always has. But He can't if you don't pray, and He can't if you don't dream. In short, He can't if you don't believe.” ― Jeffrey R. Holland