My dad left me a treasure when he died. It wasn’t a mansion or a car. It wasn’t cash or gold. It wasn’t bonds or bank accounts. In the eyes of the world my Dad died a poor man. He was a simple mechanic who worked hard to support his family. My Dad’s treasure rather was in a thousand wonderful memories that he gave me over the course of his life.
One particular one stands out in my mind today. I was just a boy playing in the backyard of a friend’s house while my Dad spent the afternoon under the hood of her beat up old car trying to get it running again. It seemed to take hours and I wasn’t sure he could bring the ancient auto back to life again this time. At long last, though, he closed the hood and turned the key in the ignition. There was a sweet smile of satisfaction on his face as the engine purred. There was a twinkle of joy in his eye when he shook his head and refused to accept anything for his work. And there was a quiet hum of happiness in his voice as we drove back home that day. This memory made a home in my heart and became a priceless pearl for my soul to cherish.
Time and time again my Dad showed me that a good life, a kind life, a giving life, and a Heavenly life was created one choice at a time. Not all of his choices were the right ones, but most of them were. He did the best he could. He lived the best he could. And he helped to bring out the best in me too. As I look back into that treasure trove of memories my Dad left me, I realize that each one of them inspired me to live and to love: one choice at a time.
How do you build a better world: one choice at a time. How do you live a loving life: one choice at a time. How do you make Earth more like Heaven: one choice at a time. May all of your choices be driven by love, inspired by joy, and guided by God. And may all of your choices bring memories of happiness to those around you.
– Joseph J. Mazzella