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The Little Train That Could

SUCCESS He has achieved success who has lived well, laughed often, and loved much; who has enjoyed the trust of pure women, the respect of intelligent men and the love of little children; who has filled his niche and accomplished his task; who has left the world better than he found it whether by an improved poppy, a perfect poem or a rescued soul; who has never lacked appreciation of Earth's beauty or failed to express it; who has always looked for the best in others and given them the best he had; whose life was an inspiration; whose memory a benediction. --1904 Bessie Anderson Stanley

Growing up in the hippie era, I used the familiar “live, laugh, love” mantra too many times to count. I remember signing school yearbooks with the big looping L and writing in the accompanying three words inside it. Those were innocent times of youth who thought we could wave those three words around and magic would happen, kinda like abracadabra. It was sometimes a battle cry as we raged against war, racism, hateful acts against our fellow humans. Songs carried the theme. It was written on graffiti-filled walls. It was written in a poem called Success in 1904 by Bessie Anderson Stanley who won a whopping $250 when she submitted it in a poetry contest. According to her family, she was able to pay off her mortgage with that – what??! But back to those words that she chose as a definition of success. Maybe there is something magical when we use them together. Let’s try it: Live, Laugh, Love. As my friend Karen Palmer would say “if it’s not easy peasy lemon squeezy, I'm not interested.” This magic formula seems easy enough, right?

Angels, you have said numerous times that we tend to complicate things. What is the power in these three simple words? Are they a magical combination?

Dear Ones, we would love to bring to your mind the old-time freight trains to use as an example. These trains had three main parts, just as your mantra does. The engine or locomotive, the freight cars, and the caboose. Each one is important. Each one has a designated function. Individually, each one is essential in what it provides to the success of the train working as it is intended to do. Together they are complete. The first component is the engine. Yes, it can work alone and travel all by itself but it is not fulfilling its purpose by doing so, is it? It was built to be the power source that moves the train. The cars in the middle also serve a purpose or else they would not be attached to the engine. They carry the load that is being transported from point A to point B. They do not have to exert energy initially. They are tugged into motion by the engine and then drawing on that strength, pull the attached cars coming behind them. The caboose is misunderstood by many as to its function. When Teri was a child she grew up around trains and thought the caboose was just for the person standing on the step to wave at her. This “friendly” person was always on the lookout for potential problems and the caboose housed him on the train as well as other personnel who might need a bit of rest from their duties. You might say it was a safe warm place among cold steel.

We used this image of the train to help you understand how important it is to look at each piece of something with moving parts. It is no coincidence that the words you are asking about were grouped together as they were. The first word, live, is the engine. Yes, it can work alone without coordinating with anyone or anything else. That, however, is called existing. To really fully live, you must be aware of your power and where that source comes from. Just as the engines of olden days worked on fire fuel, your fire fuel is spirit inside of you. The more you stoke the fire, the more powerful you become as a motivator and a leader of others who may need to connect with you. The second part, laughter, is the cargo section of the train. The load you carry throughout your life will vary in its heaviness. Sometimes the car is only half full, other times loaded top to bottom with what is being carried. If you are merely existing and pulling that load along day after day, you cannot see the true purpose of your existence. Dear Ones, you are here to enjoy the journey. It’s not about the destination where the train is headed. The freight cars do not care about that. They only know they can enjoy being as the engine pulls them along, just as you can lighten up and enjoy being as life pulls you along for the ride throwing your hands up and laughing all the way -- or resist and possibly cause a derailment. Lastly, love is the caboose of life. It is the safety zone, the warm haven for your journey. When you are weary and tired of the uphill climb, look for respite in the arms of love. When you think you cannot take one more step on your journey because the burden is too heavy, rest in the arms of love. When life knocks you to your knees with challenges, come home to love.

I sit here early in the morning with tears flowing. As the message took shape and I began to see what was being opened up for us all, the very beauty of it was overwhelming. All my life, I have said those three words – live, laugh, love. In all my life I have never understood their deeper meaning … until now. Thank you Angels.

Teri Angel is an angelspeaker – one who receives and delivers messages from the Divine. She is an author, teacher, peaceful warrior and creator of the movement Peas For Peace as part of the Peace On Earth Tour, a movement of loving our Mama Gaia. You can contact her at or visit the website for more information about how you can be involved in the movement and mission to bring in more peace, love and joy to our planet.

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