To all our wonderful readers: Wish you a very Merry Christmas and/or very enjoyable Holidays.
*Originally published on December 23rd, 2010 (http://fridayreflections.typepad.com/weblog/2010/12/its-a-wonderful-life.html)
POINT TO PONDER
“It is one of the most beautiful compensations of this life that no man can sincerely try to help another without also helping himself.”
- Ralph Waldo Emerson
STORY LINE by Rajiv Shah
My mind keeps returning to the film, “It’s a Wonderful Life.” The film’s message has stayed with me as it has with so many viewers. The message I took away was this: the truth of one’s own life isn’t in the taking, in the acquisition of more and more things, but of the giving of oneself to others. And that giving will impact those around you.
The central character, George Bailey, is not acting like his usual self in the beginning of the film. The townspeople pray to God for George. God responds by sending an angel to show Bailey the positive impact his life has made on his community.
Without going into a full-blown synopsis of the movie, I want to pose a few thoughts: Firstly, Bailey had always wanted to travel the world, and to leave the town that he was so integral to. Secondly, Bailey regretted the things he didn’t do but never saw the positive influence he had in those around him. Why is it that the “what ifs” seem to occupy us more than the “what is?”
Finally, the angel showed George the purpose of his life and the good that was in his life all along.
The secret Bailey discovered was that you get what you give. If he had never given of himself to the community, the community would have suffered and George would have never affected the lives of so many people. The material things Bailey didn’t acquire were replaced by the wishes, love, and thoughts of those he impacted in Bedford Falls. As Bailey says at the end of the film, “No man can be poor as long as he has friends.”