INSPIRATIONAL STORIES: “Judge Me by the Footprints I Leave Behind”

An American soldier wears a hand lettered War Is Hell slogan on his helmet, Vietnam, 1965

(Warning: sad story)

A story is told about a soldier who was finally coming home after having fought in Vietnam.

He called his parents from San Francisco.

“Mom and Dad, I’m coming home, but I’ve got a favor to ask. I have a friend I’d like to bring with me.”

“Sure,” they replied, “we’d love to meet him.”

“There’s something you should know the son continued, “he was hurt pretty badly in the fighting. He stepped on a land mined and lost an arm and a leg. He has nowhere else to go, and I want him to come live with us.”

“I’m sorry to hear that, son. Maybe we can help him find somewhere to live.”

“No, Mom and Dad, I want him to live with us.”

“Son,” said the father, “you don’t know what you’re asking. Someone with such a handicap would be a terrible burden on us. We have our own lives to live, and we can’t let something like this interfere with our lives. I think you should just come home and forget about this guy. He’ll find a way to live on his own.”

At that point, the son hung up the phone. The parents heard nothing more from him.

A few days later, however, they received a call from the San Francisco police. Their son had died after falling from a building, they were told. The police believed it was suicide. The grief-stricken parents flew to San Francisco and were taken to the city morgue to identify the body of their son. They recognized him, but to their horror they also discovered something they didn’t know, their son had only one arm and one leg.

The parents in this story are like many of us. We find it easy to love those who are good-looking or fun to have around or belong to our family or group, but we don’t like people who are different, inconvenience us or make us feel uncomfortable.

Thankfully, there’s someone who won’t treat us that way. Someone who loves us with an unconditional love that welcomes us into the forever family, regardless of how messed up we are.

Tonight, before you tuck yourself in for the night, say a little prayer that you will accept people as they are, and to help us all be more understanding of those who appear different from us!!!

(Author unknown)

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7 Comments Add yours

  1. So sad -but totally inspiring! I am just loving your blog! Thank you!

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  2. Thank you so much for your lovely feedback!

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  3. LindaP says:

    This story touched my heart ,but also made me sad because it happens every day!

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  4. Yes, so true… Thinking about it, and becoming more aware will help us all to keep a more open mind, and put ourselves in other people’s shoes, to develop more compassion. Compassion, hope and love is what humanity needs most.

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  5. Beautiful story of truth and reality Amira and yes absolutely true there r some people who just can’t accept others who are strangers and I knew it was him only but sad that this is how we r and it is mostly with all of us. These stories are eye openers in themselves and speak the truth at all times. Awesome and brilliant quotes of wisdom and so much to learn from them

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    1. Thank you so much Kamal!<3
      So true, it teaches us to open our eyes and look within when we become judgemental, the difference it makes when is one of our own family, and when is someone else… and yet we are all part of the human family, of the Oneness.

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