This is Part 2 of the lessons I learned from the book: Dear Chandler, Dear Scarlett: A Grandfather's Thoughts on Faith, Family, and the Things That Matter Most
Part 1 can be found here:
*On Loving Thy Neighbor
Do unto others as you would have them do unto you. No matter how different people from you, they are just as important and valuable. you are not better than them, and they are not better than you. God made all of you and He loves you all the same.
Someday, someone will be mean to you. Try not to get angry or get even. Think about how it makes you feel and how much it hurts for someone to be mean and spiteful toward you. Reflect upon how painful it is that someone tried to humiliate you or looked down on you. And then promise God, your grandpa, and yourself that you will never purposely make someone else feel like that. Go out of your way to be nice to people, especially the ones others ignore and mistreat.
America is unique because people come from all cultures, languages, races, religions, and countries and live the rest of their lives in freedom. I hope you will never take your freedom from granted. I hope you vote in every election, donate money to causes you support, and fight too protect your right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. When you say your bedtime prayers every night, you should always thank God for your mommy, daddy and of course your grandpa. But you should also thank Him for the United States of America.
*On Love and Marriage
It is easy to get married, but it takes real work to stay married. Love is the commitment to faithfully act in a loving way toward each other. There is no such thing as a perfect marriage, because there are no perfect people - let along two. The real joy in marriage is in knowing that someone will love you in spite of all your faults. Love and happiness are not the same, and if you're doing things right, happiness may come and go depending on circumstances, but love will only get stronger and deeper.
*On the Environment
When I was eleven years old and in the Boy Scouts, I learned a valuable lesson: Always leave your campsite in as good or better shape than you found it. The same is true for the planet. God has let you borrow it while you live, but it doesn't belong to you, and the people who live after you will have to deal with any mess you leave behind. The earth is your campsite. You don't own it. You just get to borrow it for a little while and then move on. Have a great time camping out, but pick up all the things you brought with you and don't take anything away but pictures. If you leave God's great campsite in as good or better shape than you found it, you will make your grandpa very proud.
As the Creator of the Universe, God is not only the most powerful being ever, but the most creative one as well. And because you were made in His image, it stands to reason that He intended you to be creative, too. We all have a creative capacity within us. If you develop it, you will be able not only to dream big things, but do big things.
Someone once said what doesn't kill us makes us stronger. That's true. Once you've lived through terrible pain, you're better prepared to deal with whatever else life throws your way.
Some of the most intense pain you will ever feel will not be the pain of your body... this is the pain your soul feels when you experience loss, disappointment, failure, or rejection. Learning how to overcome emotional pain will mark the difference between living a life full of meaning and purpose or drifting away in a sea of self pity and bitterness.