Love, Laugh, and Learn

Rick - Findlay, Ohio
Entered on August 15, 2008

I believe that the purpose of life is to love, to laugh, and to learn. And while traveling on the road of life is a wonderful experience for most of us, it becomes for many others just a tedious jaunt fraught with deep and dangerous potholes. Of course, loving, laughing, and learning are all choices. I believe it is attitude that makes all the difference!

The purpose of life is to love…

Life is all about love. In fact, love is our ultimate purpose for being. Without love, nothing else would much matter.

A lawyer once tried to trick Jesus into making a mistake by asking him which of all the commandments was the most important. The answer Jesus gave was profound. “Jesus replied…The most important commandment is this… you must love the LORD your God with all your heart, all your soul, all your mind, and all your strength. The second is equally important: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ No other commandment is greater than these (Mark 12:29-31 NLT).”

I was raised by a single mother in the 1950s. I can remember being the only child in my class that didn’t have both a mom and a dad at home. My mother had a difficult time expressing her love and there were times when I didn’t know if I was loved or not. But my dear sweet grandmother taught me the real meaning of love through her tender touch, beautiful smile, and deep faith in God. It was years before my mother was finally able to deal with her pain and rejection. And that was when she chose to accept Jesus. When she realized she was loved unconditionally, my mother finally experienced the freedom to express her love to me and others. Her attitude changed completely.

It’s been said that love is a verb. That means love must take the form of action. And that means love is a choice. Our attitude must be one of choosing love each day.

The purpose of life is to laugh…

Can you even imagine life without laughter? A sense of humor is an attitudinal quality that encourages an individual to think about the lighter aspects of life that others may not see in the same situation. If you take everything in life too seriously, it will eventually pull you down. Most things aren’t the end of the world, and life will be much easier if you learn to put things in the proper perspective and even allow yourself to laugh at your predicaments.

Laughter is even therapeutic. Studies have shown that laughter can keep you well and even cure serious diseases. Make the decision to see the humor in your life and decide each day to choose an attitude of laughter.

The purpose of life is to learn…

Learning has always been a huge part of my life. I have wonderful memories of learning new things in Kindergarten and Sunday School…Boy Scouts and high school… and college and seminary. And I’ve learned even more as a lifelong student in the School of Hard Knocks!

As a corporate training manager, university professor, and pastor, I’ve invested many hours in teaching others. Of course, I learned a lot from preparing to do all that teaching, but I still strive to be a constant learner every day of my life. You know, I think that even Heaven will be a place of continuous learning. There are so many things I want to learn… how to solve a Rubick’s Cube puzzle in 30 seconds, how to play the piano like Liberace, and how to speak Shih Tzu so I can have a real conversation with my dog Gus! I want to learn from Noah and Moses and Abe Lincoln and Mother Teresa and Ronald Reagan… and my great great great great great great great grandfather! But most of all, I want to meet Jesus and learn why He loved me so much that He gave His life for me! Never let a day go by without choosing an attitude to learn something… anything to make life more interesting, exciting, and fun!

So I fully believe that the purpose of life – both for now and for eternity – is to love, to laugh, and to learn. But I also believe it is attitude that makes the journey such a rich and rewarding experience!