At a recent benefit, I heard a speaker take the Wizard of Oz story and parlay it into a magnificent tale of giving, caring and courage. A tin man, who was empty on the inside, needed a heart. A lost man made of fluff needed a brain and a lion simply needed his courage back. Everyone knows how the story ends as we discover that we all fit these roles from time to time and that Toto still remains an irritating dog to this day. There were other lessons learned from this great story, however, and I think they are often overlooked.
If you are mean person or even a wicked witch, a giant house can and should fall on top of you, leaving nothing but a great pair of shoes for the taking. A good heart could have served that witch well. I have known a few people that I wished had larger hearts, or any heart or even a house on top of them, although I realize that makes my heart a little smaller for wanting a giant dwelling to land on these people. But, perhaps it would knock some kindness into them.
This great story also taught us that those without hearts gather friends like flying monkeys. This alone, should be a red flag that one should change their ways and seek better company. I'm always on the lookout for flying monkeys as I want to make sure my heart is well and I've not fallen prey to bitterness and any loss of joy. Once you start running with this crowd, it's hard to break away unless you melt your hardened heart.
I realize that heart health is very important and that we should fill our hearts with joy and kindness. We should seek out higher standards of giving and have the courage and knowledge to do the right thing, even when attacked by flying monkeys.
So, whether it is my children who have been affected by heartless people, myself who has taken a blow, or a tin man who stands alone in the forest, it is my hope that heart health kicks in and all of these good people will move forward with light in their hearts and courage to lead with kindness even when there are witches on the perimeter and falling houses looming overhead.