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It Doesn't Get Much Better than This!



Whenever I hear the phrase that is the title of this article, it reminds me of an amateur video we shot of a farewell celebration in India many years ago. Many members of the community were gathered together in the lounge room of accommodation that we had built on top of a sewer in Chennai (then Madras), and they were enjoying a drink. Kevin looked into the camera with a beaming smile (and, if I recall correctly, his arm around someone) and said, "It doesn't get much better than this." How true!
I would like to contrast that with another popular saying: "Is that all there is?"

I believe that much of the world, and especially people in the wealthier countries, leans toward the second, sadly cynical, approach to life. They are looking for something else... something that they feel they are missing out on. And they turn to all the wrong things to find it, thus coming to the conclusion that life in general is a huge disappointment. "Is that all?" they ask with frowns on their faces.
It is this dissatisfaction that keeps the wheels of industry turning, as more and more junk is churned out to give the impression that each new trinket is what they need to make themselves happy.

I recently read about a woman who cheated her employers out of 45 million dollars. Because she could not be seen publicly spending so much money, for fear of arousing suspicion, she took to hiding luxuries in a safe deposit box: huge diamonds, litre bottles of the most expensive perfume, the most expensive designer clothes.

All of this she could not use, but she must have felt that just by possessing it, she would achieve something that she was looking for. But even if she had used it, what difference would it have made? Whether it's a million dollar diamond or a piece of cut glass hanging around your neck nothing really changes, and surely, by the time they locked her up for that theft, she must have already been starting to ask herself, "Is this all there is to life?"

By contrast, I have seen some very poor people in Third World countries with a real zest for life. Smiling, laughing, and loving one another, sometimes without even a roof over their heads. Obviously, if they are malnourished and sick, the smiles would be affected somewhat (though I have also seen sick people with a very positive, and grateful, spirit). If we have full stomachs, a warm body, a roof over our heads, and plenty of friends, it really cannot get much better than that no matter how much money we accumulate, can it? Should this not be the focus of our attention and the shade of our assessment about the life we are living?

Very often when I climb into bed at night I find myself overwhelmed with gratefulness at what a luxury it is to be able to sleep in such incredible comfort night after night, on a mattress of sponge that kings and queens would have given a fortune for in past centuries.

The same is true of food. Can it really get all that much better than a bowl of corn flakes, a ham and cheese sandwich, or a cup of hot tomato soup?

What an absolute luxury life itself is, and yet we take it so much for granted, as we search, instead, for that little bit more in all the idols on which we lavish our time and money. As the Bible says, "Godliness with contentment is great gain." Such a simple truth in itself, and yet it is wasted on so much of this deceived and deceiving world.

So the next time you start to complain about what you don't have, look around and give a thought to how much you do have, and ask yourself if it really is worth all the effort to find something better than what we already have. Because really, it doesn't get much better than this.

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