Five lessons to make you think about the way we treat people.

1 . First Important Lesson - Cleaning Lady.

During my second month of college, our professor gave us a pop quiz. I was a
conscientious student and had breezed through the questions, until I read
the last one: "What is the first name of the woman who cleans the school?"
Surely this was some kind of joke. I had seen the cleaning woman several
times. She was tall, dark-haired and in her 50s, but how would I know her
name? I handed in my paper, leaving the last question blank. Just before
class ended, one student asked if the last question would count toward our
quiz grade..
"Absolutely," said the professor. "In your careers, you will meet many
people. All are significant. They deserve your attention and care, even if
all you do is smile and say "hello". I've never forgotten that lesson. I
also learned her name was Dorothy.

2. Second Important Lesson - Pickup in the Rain

One night, at 11:30 p.m., an older African American woman was standing on
the side of an Alabama highway trying to endure a lashing rainstorm. Her car
had broken down and she desperately needed a ride. Soaking wet, she decided
to flag down the next car.
A young white man stopped to help her, generally unheard of in those
conflict filled 1960s. The man took her to safety, helped her get assistance
and put her into a taxicab. She seemed to be in a big hurry, but wrote down
his address and thanked him. Seven days went by and a knock came on the
man's door. To his surprise, a giant console color TV was delivered to his
home. A special note was attached. It read: "Thank you so much for assisting
me on the highway the other night. The rain drenched not only my clothes,
but also my spirits. Then you came along. Because of you, I was able to make
it to my dying husband's bedside just before he passed away.. God bless you
for helping me and unselfishly serving others," Sincerely, Mrs. Nat King

3. Third Important Lesson - Always remember those who serve.

In the days when an ice cream sundae cost much less, a 10 year old boy
entered a hotel coffee shop and sat at a table. A waitress put a glass of
water in front of him. "How much is an ice cream sundae?" he asked. "Fifty
cents," replied the waitress. The little boy pulled his hand out of his
pocket and studied the coins in it.
Well, how much is a plain dish of ice cream?" he inquired. By now more
people were waiting for a table and the waitress was growing impatient.
"Thirty-five cents," she brusquely replied. The little boy again counted his
coins. "I'll have the plain ice cream," he said. The waitress brought the
ice cream, put the bill
on the table and walked away. The boy finished the ice cream, paid the
cashier and left. When the waitress came back, she began to cry as she wiped
down the
table. There, placed neatly beside the empty dish, were two nickels and five
pennies. You see, he couldn't have the sundae, because he had to have enough
left to leave her a tip.

4. Fourth Important Lesson - The Obstacles in Our Path.

In ancient times, a King had a boulder placed on a roadway. Then he hid
himself and watched to see if anyone would remove the huge rock. Some of the
king's wealthiest merchants and courtiers came by
and simply walked around it. Many loudly blamed the King for not keeping the
roads clear, but none did anything about getting the stone out of the way.
Then a peasant came along carrying a load of vegetables. Upon approaching
the boulder, the peasant laid down his burden and tried to move the stone to
the side of the road. After much pushing and
straining, he finally succeeded. After the peasant picked up his load of
vegetables, he noticed a purse lying in the road where the boulder had been.
The purse contained many gold coins and a note from the King indicating that
the gold was for the person who
removed the boulder from the roadway. The peasant learned what many of us
never understand! Every obstacle presents an opportunity to improve our

5. Fifth Important Lesson - Giving When it Counts.

Many years ago, when I worked as a volunteer at a hospital, I got to know a
little girl named Liz who was suffering from a rare & serious disease. Her
only chance of recovery appeared to be a blood transfusion from her
5-year-old brother, who had miraculously
survived the same disease and had developed the antibodies needed to combat
the illness. The doctor explained the situation to her little brother, and
asked the little boy if he would be willing to give his blood to his sister.
I saw him hesitate for only a moment
before taking a deep breath and saying, "Yes I'll do it if it will save
her." As the transfusion progressed, he lay in bed next to his sister and
smiled, as we all did, seeing the color returning to her cheeks. Then his
face grew pale and his smile faded. He looked up at the doctor and asked
with a trembling voice, "Will I start to die right away?". Although the
little boy had misunderstood the doctor, he understood what self-sacrifice
is, for he was willing to give all his blood away to save his sister.


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