The Thrill Of Yesterday Can Still Be In Our Tommorrows!


The holiday season is once again upon us, and the traditions that we hold dear with it. One of the traditions we had when I was a kid was the viewing of the movie “Miracle on 34th Street”. It holds wonderful memories for me so I couldn’t help but watch it, at least once, this past Christmas season. I still enjoy the story line and its message never fails to warm my heart. An interesting thing happens when you view a movie over the years. Scenes that were once regarded as “common”, start to become nostalgic. One such scene in this classic movie is when the daughter of the lead actress is getting ready for bed. She is chewing a piece of bubble gum and just before she lies down for the night she takes it out, opens a small box and dutifully places the ABC gum, (Already Been Chewed, as we used to call it), in it for safe keeping. It is obvious that the little girl places “high value” on it and is saving it so that she can chew it again the next day. As a kid I don’t ever recall placing my gum in a box, but I do remember sticking it on the top of the bedpost at night for future use. My wife placed such a high value on a piece of gum that, as a little girl, she would walk the neighborhood street in search of a piece, and upon discovering such, would peel it off the road and then place it in her mouth and enjoy the combined flavor of asphalt and spearmint. Her parents were horrified that she would do such a thing! I’m sure she wouldn’t have been satisfied with the ABC gum if she had plenty of new gum in her house. But she didn’t, as chewing gum was a real treat back in the day! It had value because of the law of supply and demand. The demand in both her and my house, as a child, far out weighed the supply. Such was the case in most houses back then. Bubble gum was not a priority item for the family!

Today, almost no child would think of “saving” their bubble gum by putting it on the bedpost, or saving it in a small box. They certainly wouldn’t be combing the streets for it as my wife did. Somehow, over the course of time, the value of bubble gum began to diminish. It seems the supply in homes is far exceeding the demand. The diminishing value of bubble gum is a micro example of how rich our country has become. I recall hearing my Mother lament, years ago, that she couldn’t buy her grandchildren anything that they would value, because they already had everything. There is a lot of truth to what she said. We live in an age where material things have overtaken most of our lives. We buy things and within months the “new and improved” version is being advertised. It creates in us a feeling that we are always pursuing but never reaching our material goals. It also creates a feeling of sadness, envy, and emptiness as we swim upstream against the tide. It is a terrible feeling to “think” that you are deprived!

But the truth be told, “thinking” we are deprived, doesn’t mean we are. No, the searching for happiness in the riches of this world has been going on since Adam. And the end result has always been the same; an emptiness and a never-ending thirst for more! The fulfillment in this life is found elsewhere. It is found in the gospel principles as revealed through modern-day prophets and apostles. It is found in service to God and to others. It can be found in the small things of life. The small things of life are usually not advertised by Mega-corporations, and they don’t need to be. They are right in front of us on a daily basis. They are found in the smile of a small child, the laugh of a loved one, the embrace of a friend. They are captured in a wordless exchange of a look with our spouse or the magical touch of their hand. The richness of this life is living and experiencing the daily challenges that are present before us. It’s the good feeling that swells in our hearts when we know we have placed others needs before ours. It is the feeling of peace that comes to our souls as we lay our heads down at night, knowing we have done an honest days work. It is these things and many more that are of real value. They are priceless!

So the next time we place some “double bubble” in our mouth, let us take a moment to savor it’s taste. Let’s treat it like it’s our last piece. Perhaps we should put it on our bedpost as a symbol of the joy that can be found in simple things. Maybe we should leave it there as a permanent reminder that joy can be found in something as simple as ABC gum. It would be a small gesture proving that we needn’t experience or have something “new” each day to find happiness; and that the thrill of yesterday can still be in our tomorrows!


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