I am convinced that at the end of “It’s A Wonderful Life,” when George Bailey is crying, it’s not the money pouring in or the building and loan that they have all saved, but rather he is incredibly moved by the love and care his friends have shown him.
George feels valued, cherished, and important to those around him. Suddenly, no matter his lot in life, his leaky roof, his noisy children, the broken spindle on the staircase, or the so-called crummy career of convenience that he has, even a lifetime of missing out on all the adventure that he craves, he as a human being feels truly and completely loved!
“No man is a failure who has friends,” the angel Clarence says.
Yes, so true! Friendship makes our lives worthwhile and purposeful!
However, George will still have a struggling career after the holidays. When a basket of money is poured on his table in the living room and everyone is crying and singing, his immediate needs have been cared for. His building and loan company can continue. This is meaningful and right.
It’s also noteworthy that in January he will need to continue to strive for frugal living, time with his loving wife Mary, remodeling his drafty old house, and raising his four children. But for a moment, he is completely seen, noticed, valued.
If we all measured our lives not via monetary success or career gain but in the realm of friendship, and all the love and care that others show us, we might view our lives as a truly wonderful gift!