The Power of Proper Perspective

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I recently began a sermon with this story told by author Randy Alcorn but in that sermon shared only the first part of the story. Now as Paul Harvey would say, here is… “the rest of the story.”

Years ago, a business man parked his Mercedes near an office complex in downtown Manila. A street boy asked, as the poor there often do, if he could watch the vehicle while the owner was away. He agreed.

Several hours later, the man returned to his car and gave the boy some loose change. As he got into his car, the street boy said, “Mister, you sure have a nice car.” He replied, “Well, thank you.” “Where did you get a car like that? Did somebody give it to you?” The man smiled, “Actually, yes, my brother gave me this car.” It seemed the boy was about to reply when the man asked, “Do you wish you had a brother like that?” “No,” the poor child responded, “I wish I could be a brother like that.”

Touched by the boy’s unselfish perspective he offered the child a ride, but soon had to open the car windows because of the stench coming from his grimy but excited passenger. The child asked, “Sir, could we give my little brother a ride too?” The man replied, “Tell me about your brother. Where is he?” They talked and the business man agreed to give both children a ride. They drove into a Manilla slum called Tondo where the boy went to get his younger sibling.

He disappeared down a filthy alleyway but soon returned carrying his little brother on his back because he was severely crippled. As the two boys got into the car the older brother shared that his younger brother, “had an accident and now can’t walk.”

The man learned details about the younger brother’s accident. He realized the family was too poor to afford the medical care the young boy needed so desperately. He said, “My brother is a doctor. Why don’t we see what he can do for your little brother?”

The doctor eventually performed a simple operation which allowed the child to walk again. Remarkably, despite his poverty, the street boy who guarded the man’s car got his wish, he was able to… “be a brother like that.”

That is the power of proper perspective. The attitude the Bible encourages when it says, “Don’t look out only for your own interests, but take an interest in others, too. You must have the same attitude that Christ Jesus had.” (Philippians 2:4-5, NLT)

We need to be people who, like Jesus, focus on how blessed we are and how we can be a blessing to others. This is always good, but it is especially appropriate at Thanksgiving. I hope this year each of us will count our blessings and consider how we can use them to bless others.

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