Monday, September 17, 2012

Sharing: Foundation for Happiness

"Sharing is the foundation of happiness. Sharing our material things is sharing a little. Sharing our wisdom is sharing a lot. Sharing our love is sharing everything"--a quotation that introduces the comments of the desk columnist of the Catholic Times, who goes on to tell us about a fortunate person, an orphan, who receives an unexpected gift.

Jerusha Abbott, the orphan and heroine of Jean Webster's novel Daddy Long-Legs and of several movie adaptations, including the Korean movie "Kidan Ajeossi, is the beneficiary of someone who decides to share. Jerusha, now 18 years of age and working at the orphanage where she was brought up, is told that a benefactor would  help her financially and give her what is necessary to live during her college years;  she has only to write him once a month, addressing the letters to a made-up name. He will never reply to her letters, which take up most of the novel, nor will she ever know his identity. She did catch a glimpse of him once, leaving the orphanage, but noticed only that he was tall and long-legged. 

Though the unselfish motive of the benefactor, content to give anonymously, is to be applauded, the columnist believes we all have a desire to know our "Daddy Long-Legs," to know who has helped us and to express our gratitude for what was received. 

All have different possessions to share. Some have an abundance of material things; others have wisdom and knowledge to share, while others little of these to share, but possess a loving heart. However, just possessing means little.  Sometimes the sharing of love is the best way to know it was in our possession to begin with, and is the surest and the most direct way to experience happiness.

Jesus has shown us this kind of love, and we have been commissioned to show this love to others, but we often are content to express only a verbal 'thank you' for the love received--in whatever form it's given--without sharing it with others.

We are by nature social creatures and cannot be truly satisfied without relating and sharing with others. Sharing what we possess to help others, and receiving from others what we need should be a second-nature response. Being a "Daddy Long-Legs" to others is a win-win situation for all of us. 

No comments:

Post a Comment