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Two Paths

Posted by happypizza on July 5, 2008

Happypizza: This article was written by a good friend of mine and I really enjoyed it. Sometimes when making a post, I try to find a picture or design something that goes along with the theme of the post. It’s a pretty time consuming process for me, especially when I get into working with photoshop. I started the pic below a few weeks ago but got kinda stuck with some “photoshop block”. So I left off for sometime hoping I would get a good concept or idea later.

Today for some reason I was feeling extra creative so I decided to give it another shot and I ended up putting together the picture below in a relatively short amount of time. I know my graphic work is not on a professional level…but I was quite happy with the final picture. I give God the credit for giving me that extra boost of creativity that helped me finish it!

Two Paths, Artificial vs. Natural

Two Paths

Two Paths

I went to see a friend the other day. I passed through two sets of polished doors and ascended the building in a gleaming elevator to get to his office. A receptionist offered me a cup of gourmet coffee before ushering me into a spacious conference room, where personal mementos, souvenirs from world travels, and numerous awards competed for space on teak shelves.

My friend arrived a minute later and greeted me warmly with a winning smile, his tailored suit slightly rumpled from a long day in the office. He sighed as he sat down across from me, and his smile dropped momentarily, revealing a tired and careworn face.

“Long day?” I inquired. He nodded. It had been a long day. It seemed like every day was a long day, even weekends, especially now with the burgeoning economy and the flood of new projects coming the company’s way. Business was good and he was happy, he said, but I knew him well enough to not completely believe him.

Had I already heard that he was buying a second house? His wife was visiting friends in Rome and had been gone for over a month now, his children were studying abroad, and he had just returned from Madrid. A third car was arriving from the BMW showroom next week. An extra car would make things easier for him and his family. One less thing to argue about. There had been a lot of changes recently—a new office in a better location, a more efficient staff, a better PR manager—and there were more changes coming in his company’s management, image, and products. It takes a lot to succeed in the fast-paced world of today.

Sometimes the best things in life are the things that money can’t buy

We chatted about my recent volunteer work, a trip to a flooded province. He glanced through the pictures I showed him and commented on the beauty and simplicity of rural life.

His phone rang and… he excused himself, returning a minute later to apologize for a hasty departure. Some urgent matters had come up, and he needed to attend to them at once. “We should get together again soon. Call me next week,” he said.

I went to see a friend yesterday. I drove eight hours up winding mountain roads to get to a refugee camp scattered across four square kilometers of rural countryside. A breathtaking view, but rudimentary common conveniences. Where the road ended, the walking began. I waded through a knee-deep stream and hiked up a deeply rutted mud trail, accompanied by a dozen eager children who had spotted me on the road below. I sat on the step of my friend’s bamboo hut and smiled at the ragged children who promised that my friend would arrive shortly. Then they ran off in the direction of the local well to announce my arrival to the others.

A minute later my friend was rushing to embrace me, a six-month-old baby slung across her back. She ushered me away from the throng of children that had reassembled, playfully shooing away the ones that chattered over one another as they tugged on my pants leg. In the dim, warm interior of her one-room hut, coffee was served. As I savored each sip, I considered my friend’s thoughtful gesture; my cupful was probably her ration for the week.

Our conversation was broken and limited due to the mountain dialect she spoke, but her face shone as she struggled to tell me about her new baby, her family, and the small group of orphans she was helping to care for.

“What do you need most?” I asked her, thinking to offer her the best from the truckload of supplies I had waiting back on the road at the trail’s end. I anticipated a detailed list in reply.

“Nothing,” she answered. “Whatever we need, God supplies. He takes good care of us.” Her baby began whimpering and she hugged him close, describing once again the joy he brings her every day and mentioning nothing of the lack of money, official papers, and other resources needed to give him a good start in life.

Another refugee, a T-shirted boy in his late teens, came into the hut. After introductions he sat on the matted floor next to her, his fingers skillfully plucking a soft, sweet tune on the weathered guitar he held in his lap as he listened to our conversation.

“It must be wonderful to live in a city,” he said at last, a little wistfully.

“Have you ever been to one?” I asked.

“No,” he replied, shaking his head sadly. “But I hope to one day. I hope to move to a big city and become rich and famous.”

I smiled as my eyes took in the breathtaking mountain sunset that lit up the western sky and my ears caught the happy laughter from a volleyball game outside the hut.

“I don’t think that’s what you really want,” I replied to his surprise. “Believe me, sometimes the best things in life are the things that money can’t buy.”

Author: Christina Andreassen

Copyright the Family International

Used without permission

3 Responses to “Two Paths”

  1. nyx said

    Hey Petrus,

    Have a happy day! –Say hi to Angelique for me.

    Love you,


  2. Jared said

    Hey I’m wondering if I can use your image. I’m putting together a website for my mum’s business – and she came across your collage and wants to use on one of her pages. Am happy to pay or have the image linked to your website. Let me know.

    • happypizza said

      Hey Jared,
      None of the original images I made the collage from belonged to me so you’re welcome to use it. If you want to link the image back to this page that’s kind of you and that’s definitely enough for me.
      Peace and love,

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