I Want To Like My Eternal Companion: Me!


Many years ago I stepped off of the airplane into a new world. I might as well have died and gone to a different planet. I stood as a young missionary on the ramp looking out on a land I had never seen before. It was Argentina, the assignment of my church mission call.  It was if I had gone back in time twenty to thirty years. The cars were older looking, the landscape was unfamiliar, the clothes were strange and they spoke a language that was foreign to my ears.  As I walked down the ramp onto the concourse there was only one thing in my life that hadn’t instantly changed; me! I felt as if I was a character out of a bad “Twilight Zone” episode who had been dropped into a different world.  It was a great lesson to me that everything could change in an instant and that all aspects of my life were temporary but the essence of who I am is eternal! The other night I was watching a show on the life of the Kennedy family. There was a statement made by the patriarch of the Kennedy family, Joseph Kennedy, that left me pondering. He said, “It’s not what you are, it’s what people think you are”. I guess he meant that “image” was more important in getting yourself elected to public office than substance. While this statement might have a ring of truth in the political arena, it certainly doesn’t have any value in the eternities. “What you are” is and will always be “who you are!”

I have traveled with him all my life. He is my eternal companion. Most times I have enjoyed his company, but on occasion he has done things that have embarrassed me. He has also done things that have made me proud. Sometimes I think he is brilliant, yet at other times he seems as “dumb” as a brick. He will never leave me alone, so I desperately want to like him. I want to respect him for who he is and for what he stands for. I composed a poem about him called, “The Value and Worth of the Man”. It reads:

The image of the man he sees reflected each morning

Has changed vastly over these many years.

It’s a reflection that can often bring him to tears.


His once youthful and good-looking face

Is laced with wrinkles by sun of the day.

His hair is thinned and starting to turn grey.


All his friends can see, too, the physical change,

But only he can see the soul within

Its values and whether it is free from sin


So no matter what other men may think

About him, and if they say he is OK,

His worth comes only from what he can say

Of the value and worth of the man he sees

In the mirror at the end of day


I have always believed that some people really can fool “all the people, all of the time”, when it comes to character. But you can’t fool yourself or God. I learned in Argentina that I would never get away from me.  Your assured eternal companion, regardless of the life you live, is going to be you! Be true to yourself because eternity is a long time. It’s more enjoyable to make the journey when you travel it with someone you like!


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