Have you watched the movie Letters to God? This is about a boy who suffers cancer. He is still young, around 8 year old. He had implemented many chemotherapies for his illness. However, all chemotherapies did not do any good for the boy. He had been better, but the cancer cell was still alive.
The movie was based on true story. I always love true stories. Have you watched Ip Man? Or maybe Invictus? The one is about kung fu master and the latter is about Nelson Mandela, one of the greatest man in the history of mankind.
Okay, back to the movie. This boy, Tyler Doherty, every day writes a letter to God. Yes, a letter to God, our Father in heaven. He just sent all the letters through post man without hesitate, every day. The post man was confused because the stamp is there in the letter. However, where the post man will send it? To heaven? Where is the address of God? This is funny but it is true. Therefore, the post man just kept the letters and consult the matter with his supervisor. The supervisor then told him that this matter must be solely managed by him, because maybe there is something for him in relation to the letters to God.
The post man is a destructive guy. He got divorced by his wife. His son was taken away from him. He felt that he has nothing. He was confused with his own life. He tried to find the answers on all of his life's troubles. He tried to get near with the priest and the church in his community. However, none of that has given him peace and comfort on his situation.
Tyler as usual, even though he was sick, he was always cheerful. He enjoys his life. He spends his life with love and laughter. He also enjoys sport. He keeps on going to school even though many students mock him because of his illness.
This is the interesting part of the movie and the story. Do you know what are the contents of the letters to God? The contents of the letters are praying to every one else that he knows, in his family, friends, community and the people. The fact is touching me. He suffers very much, but as a very little boy, he as a wisdom better than us as adult. He prays for others. How many do we pray for others? And, Tyler, he does it every day. He prays for his mother, for his brother, for his neighbor, for the post man, and other people. He prays that God will settle and take care their problems in life. He cares for others. He loves other people. They are always in his mind and heart.
The truth is, by his daily writing to God through post, all the children from his school (and I think also the people from his community) do the same as he did, that is daily writing letters to God, with stamp but no address. The post man and post office are confused because they have received many letters to God. One simple kind of love, transforms the community.
The points that I got from the movie are:
Gratitude. How many times are we grateful for what we have in this life? We are very rich. We have almost everything. I myself have my wife and children. I love my children very much. I am a very lucky father. Can a man value his children in terms of money? I am sure he cannot. The value of our children is infinite. It cannot be valued by money. It is not replaceable and as a father, we will not trade our children for anything. Do you realize that we are indeed all very rich man?
Love. How much love do we share to others? How many times we pray for others? I seldom pray for others. I always pray for myself, or for my family. This is not a very good attitude. However, we can give our love to others by smiling, by saying thank you, by respecting others. To me, that is the least I can do. It is not easy though because you have to train yourself so that you will not forget that you have to do that. John C Maxwell said that "your attitude sets your altitude". Earl Nightingale said that "see all the successful people in all organizations. They are in high position because of their attitude". The principle of the saying of Earl and John is the same. I believe that it is true because my experiences also tell me so.
Courage. Do we have the courage to endure suffering or illness like Tyler? It is not easy. It hurts so much. But Tyler teaches us a very valuable lesson. He is dare to endure it. He does not let the illness change him. In contrast, he is transformed because of his illness. I think all of our sufferings are intended for us to grow, to learn, to be humble.
Optimistic. Optimism is very important. Our attitude of mind is very important. As John said, our attitude sets our altitude. Attitude is in everything. It is in our mind, our body, and our words. Even though we have problem, we have to know that there will be positive lesson outside our problem. The life will be more colorful if we always have positive expectation and beliefs. How much you obtain money to be pessimistic? You will not get anything. In fact, your life may be ruined to be worse than ever. Why don't we see that the glass is half full than half empty. We have to train this attitude. It is not easy but it is possible to be developed. As Earl Nightingale told us, "We become what We think about". Therefore, be careful with what your thoughts are. Be optimist. That is better.
Contribution. This is a simple statement. We know about it. We heard it all the time. Do we do any act of contribution to others? What is the intent of our life? Where are we going? We all have to answer it. Life is not run by default system. It is run by our goals. Life is short. Even though we deny it, we cannot run from it. Life is really short. We can be dead any time if God calls us. By that time, if we do not contribute any thing to others, what is the usefulness of our life? Are we useful to be granted a life as human being? Therefore, as Tyler teaches us, let us contribute to others. Let us leave a legacy that is useful to others. Be significant. Tyler did a small act of faith, by sending letters to God. This act of faith transforms all the people in his community. And remember, this was done by a 8 year old child. Why cannot we do such thing to others? I believe we can. But, we have to start. Again, life is short. We do not want to be dead without giving any contribution to others.