“You know, the ancient Egyptians had a beautiful belief about death. When their souls got to the entrance to heaven, the guards asked two questions. Their answers determined whether they were able to enter or not. ‘Have you found joy in your life?’ ‘Has your life brought joy to others?'” –Carter, from The Bucket List
Wednesday nights are date nights at our house. I love it. Wednesdays are so busy with office things, teen things and class things. I often leave the house at 8:00 a.m. to drop Collin off at school and don’t return home until 8:30 p.m. after teen class. I really try not to have days like this, so don’t think I’m a bad father and husband. But Wednesdays just seem to pile up with counseling, meetings, lunches and class. So having a date night planned with Michelle to watch a movie is a glorious thing to look forward to.
Tonight we watched The Bucket List, which was graciously loaned to us by Miss Lindsay Slone. It came out almost two years ago but we hadn’t seen it yet. I love Jack Nicholson and Morgan Freeman so I was excited to see it. I wasn’t disappointed. It was well acted and pretty well written. I was lured into thinking deeply a couple of times and laughed out loud a few other times. But my favorite quote was at the very beginning as Morgan Freeman does a voice over while we see the mountains that will become so important to the movie. He’s speaking posthumously about his friend’s death and how we measure success in life when he says this:
“I believe that you measure yourself by the people that measure themselves by you.”
I like this. It silenced me for a few minutes.
In our Wednesday night class right now, we’re doing a series we’ve titled ‘Lists to Live By’ and we’ve been trying to come to an agreement on the most important questions to ask ourselves. We’re currently in a discussion of how to measure true success. The teens have had some very insightful ideas and discussions. And I believe this quote adds to that discussion and is a great question for all of us to ask ourselves. “Have we had enough of an impact to cause people to measure themselves by our example?” If not, shouldn’t we have?
Let that role around in your head for a while.
As a little bonus item to share, I ran across an interesting website while looking up this quote. It’s called Reel Wisdom and looks to have a database of inspirational quotes from movies. I haven’t explored it much myself yet but plan to. Give it a look and see if it’s useful to you. Let me know what you think of it.