A young man learns what's most important in life
from the guy next door.
It had been some time since Jack had seen the old
man. College, girls, career, and life itself got in
the way. In fact, Jack moved clear across the
country in pursuit of his dreams. There, in the rush
of his busy life, Jack had little time to think
about the past and often no time to spend with his
wife and son. He was working on his future, and
nothing could stop him.
Over the phone, his mother told him, "Mr. Belser
died last night. The funeral is Wednesday."
Memories flashed through his mind like an old
newsreel as he sat quietly remembering his childhood
"Jack, did you hear me?"
"Oh sorry, Mom. Yes, I heard you. It' s been so long
since I thought of him. I'm sorry, but I honestly
thought he died years ago," Jack said.
"Well, he didn't forget you. Every time I saw him
he'd ask how you were doing. He'd reminisce about
the many days you spent over 'his side of the fence'
as he put it," Mom told him.
"I loved that old house he lived in," Jack said.
"You know, Jack, after your father died, Mr. Belser
stepped in to make sure you had a man's influence in
your life," she said.
"He's the one who taught me carpentry," he said. "I
wouldn't be in this business if it weren't for him.
He spent a lot of time teaching me things he thought
were important...Mom, I'll be there for the
funeral," Jack said.
As busy as he was, he kept his word. Jack caught the
next flight to his hometown. Mr. Belser's funeral
was small and uneventful. He had no children of his
own, and most of his relatives had passed away.
The night before he had to return home, Jack and his
Mom stopped by to see the old house next door one
more time. Standing in the doorway, Jack paused for
a moment. It was like crossing over into another
dimension, a leap through space and time. The house
was exactly as he remembered. Every step held
memories. Every picture, every piece of
furniture....Jack stopped suddenly.
"What's wrong, Jack?" his Mom asked.
"The box is gone," he said.
"What box?" Mom asked.
"There was a small gold box that he kept locked on
top of his desk. I must have asked him a thousand
times what was inside. All he'd ever tell me was the
thing I value most," Jack said. It was gone.=20
Everything about the house was exactly how Jack
remembered it, except for the box. He figured
someone from the Belser family had taken it.
"Now I'll never know what was so valuable to him,"
Jack said. "I better get some sleep. I have an early
flight home, Mom."
It had been about two weeks since Mr. Belser died.
Returning home from work one day Jack disc overed a
note in his mailbox. "Signature required on a
package. No one at home. Please stop by the main
post office within the next three days," the note
Early the next day Jack retrieved the package. The
small box was old and looked like it had been mailed
a hundred years ago. The handwriting was difficult
to read, but the return address caught his
attention. "Mr. Harold Belser" it read.
Jack took the box out to his car and ripped open the
package. There inside was the gold box and an
envelope. Jack's hands shook as he read the note
inside. "Upon my death, please forward this box and
its contents to Jack Bennett. It's the thing I
valued most in my life."
A small key was taped to the letter. His heart
racing, as tears filling his eyes,! Jack carefully
unlocked the box. There inside he found a beautiful
gold pocket watch. Running his fingers slowly over
the finely etched casing, he unlatched the cover.
Inside he found these words engraved: "Jack, Thanks
for your time! - Harold Belser."
"The thing he valued most...was...my time."
Jack held the watch for a few minutes, then called
his office and cleared his appointments for the next
two days. "Why?" Janet, his assistant asked.
"I need some time to spend with my son," he said.
"Oh, by the way, Janet...thanks for your time!"
"Life is not measured by the number of breaths we
take but by the moments that take our breath away,"
Think about this. You may not realize it, but it's
1. At least 2 people in this world love you so
much that they would die for you.
2. At least 15 people in this world love you in
3. A smile from you can bring happiness to
anyone, even if they don't like you.
4. Every night, SOMEONE thinks about you before
they go to sleep.
5. You mean the world to someone.
6. If not for you, someone may not be living.
7. You are special and unique.
8. When you think you have no chance of getting
what you want, you probably won't get it, but if you
trust God to do what's best, and wait on His time,
sooner or later, you will
get it or something better.
9. When you make the biggest mistake ever,
something good can still come from it.
10. When you think the world has turned its back
on you, take a look; you most likely turned your
back on the world.
11. Someone that you don't even know exists,
12. Always remember the compliments you
received. Forget about the rude remarks.
13. Always tell someone how you feel about them;
you will feel much better when they know and you'll
both be happy.
14. If you have a great friend, take the time to
let them know that they are great.
If you send this letter to all the people you care
about, you will certainly brighten someone's day and
might change their perspective on life... for the
To everyone I sent this: "Thank you for your time."