13 things money can’t buy.

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1.       Family

There’s nothing like having a wife or a husband to come home to at night, that special person who will be there to listen and love. Even after a bad day, you look forward to pulling up to see your family.  There’s nothing like the bond with your own blood.

2.       A great friend
My father told me a long time ago that there are two things in life that are extremely difficult to find and should be cherished forever: a great spouse and a great friend. Having that person in your life who you can trust completely, who will always be honest with you, and who you can turn to in times of need is something that you can’t put a price on. “Wounds from a friend can be trusted, but an enemy multiplies kisses.”  Proverbs 27:6

3.       Freedom
Most people in America have always lived in freedom, so they have nothing to compare it to and little perspective to appreciate how truly precious freedom is. One of the biggest shockers to me and my family when we first came to America was how much the media would speak negatively about their leaders. If you did that in Iran some interesting things could happen to you. But that’s why people from all over the world come to America for freedom. Billions of people around the world would love to have the opportunity that you and I have living in the Land of the Free.

4.       Memories
Enjoy the good, the bad, and the ugly. Do your best to appreciate the tough times as well. Remember what you worried about when you were seven years old and you worried about sharing your toy with little Johnny? Remember when you were fourteen and you worried if Mary would go to the Homecoming dance with you? Did you have sleepless nights thinking about it? What would you give to be seven or fourteen years old again? Make the best of your current worries because ten years from now you may miss them.

5.       A good read
Is there anything better than reading a good book? How amazing does it feel when you get lost in a book that you can’t put down? A story that transports you to the world of the author and into the lives of the characters is priceless.

6.       Great conversations
Have you ever been so deep in a conversation with an individual or a group that you felt as if your mind were on the treadmill on level 9.5? You don’t necessarily have to agree with everything that’s said, but those are the times that you grow the most. Having your positions and assumptions challenged is good for you! There’s nothing like a stimulating conversation.

7.       Great events
There is a unique magic that happens when a lot of people get together with a common cause, whether that’s a sports game, a concert, worshiping God, a business function, or anything else. The energy and passion is multiplied when we gather together.

8.       Making yourself and family proud
This has got to be one of the greatest natural highs that you can have in life. To have the people you’ve spent the most time with in your life see you win for them is simply incredible. You can’t buy that feeling with all the money in the world.  Nordstrom, Walmart, Best Buy, Costco, and Macy’s don’t sell it; it can only be earned.

9.       Recreating yourself
Enjoy the moments when you catch yourself reacting to issues differently than you did before.  That’s a sign of recreating yourself and growing. Embrace it. Go ahead and pat yourself in the back— just make sure no one sees it when you do. 😉

10.    Great home-cooked food
There are not many scents better than good old home cooking. Armani, Versace, Issey Miyake, or any other great fragrance has nothing on the smell of food prepared with love. You can buy great food in an upscale restaurant, but nothing there replaces a great home-cooked meal as the aroma fills your whole house.

11.    Being part of a greater cause
Most people in their lifetime get one or two chances to be a part of a greater cause, but for many fear holds them back. Being part of a cause greater than yourself alone will bring out a person in you who you’ve never met before. We see much more clearly in life when we take our eyes off ourselves.

12.    A good walk
Have you ever taken a good thirty minute walk by yourself and come back totally relaxed as if the weight of all your problems had been lifted? There’s something special about a good walk. If you haven’t taken a walk by yourself recently, it may be time for one.

13.    Constant prayer
As a kid I use to think the people who talked to themselves were weird. Then I grew up and became the person who constantly speaks to himself. Except now I just call it a prayer. I have an ongoing conversation with God. There’s nothing like having a Divine Counselor to listen and to guide.

I could probably think of another ten things to add to the list, but it’s past midnight and my wife keep calling me to come upstairs. And since family is first on the list and there is nothing better than a happy wife, I will end it here. But please feel free to add comments with what things in life you believe are priceless.

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