There was a lot to take away from the January 20th inauguration of President Joe Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris. What stood out for me was one sentence of the seventy-eight-year-old president’s address: “And we’ll lead not merely by the example of our power but by the power of our example.” Profound.
Even more profound were these lines from twenty-two-year-old National Youth Poet Laureate, Amanda Gorman’s poem, The Hill We Climb:
And so we lift our gazes not to what stands between us but what stands before us We close the divide because we know, to put our future first, we must first put our differences aside We lay down our arms so we can reach out our arms to one another
“We lay down our arms so we can reach out our arms to one another”…
Covid-19 has offered up an immense window of opportunity for abundant reading for me. Yesterday, I picked up four books at the library and delved into the smallest one first, the title of which is Inner and Outer Peace by Sri Chinmoy, a spiritual teacher who dedicated his life in service to aspiring humanity.
“World peace can be achieved, revealed, offered and manifested on earth when in each person the power of love replaces the love of power.”
And again…”One who knows others is wise; one who knows himself is wisest. One who conquers others is strong; one who conquers himself is strongest.” Tao Teh Ching
This book looks like a good, short read with more than a touch of profundity.
The story belonging to today’s title is laid out below. It came to me from a friend via email, and like most things that inspire me, I’d like to share…
THE FARMER’S GRACE
An out-of-town pastor had been invited to a men’s breakfast in the middle of a rural farming area, and found himself charmed by the company and atmosphere. Before they all dug into the hearty meal, the group’s leader asked an older farmer, decked out in bib overalls, to say grace.
“Lord, I hate buttermilk,” the fellow began. The pastor opened an eye to glance at him, wondering where this might be going.
“Lord, I hate lard!” the farmer proclaimed. Now the pastor was growing concerned.
“And Lord, you know I don’t much care for raw flour,” he went on, without missing a beat.
The pastor once again opened an eye to peer around the room, and noticed many of the other men shifting in their seats uncomfortably.
“But Lord,” the farmer added, “when you mix them all together and bake them, I do love them warm fresh biscuits.
“So Lord, when things come up that we don’t like, when life gets hard, when we don’t understand what you’re saying to us, help us to just relax and wait until you are done mixing and baking. It will probably be even better than biscuits. Amen.”
How about that for great, down-to-earth wisdom worth considering when it comes to complicated situations?
While we find ourselves in a mix-up of so many things we don’t understand, like the farmer, ‘really care for’, as we pray, trust and believe surely—as surely as God is God—something good will result.
One of my great-granddaughters loves owls so whenever I come across one of these wise old birds I take notice. But is an owl really that wise? It appears that he lags behind other birds, particularly ravens, in having the smarts, but the message today sounds wise to me. Happy Saturday.
While talking to a friend yesterday, we touched on the subject of the excess baggage many of us carry through life and how God is our heavenly porter. It prompted today’s post:
How many of us have journeyed through life carrying more baggage than we should?
Everything we need for life can be carried in a carry-on case…wisdom, love, caring, common sense, trust, forgiveness, compassion, helpfulness, and more.
But we are loaded down with bad memories, guilt, revenge, unforgiveness, self-centredness, and other things that weigh a ton and cause life to be a heavy burden rather than the learning experience it is meant to be.
Weights can be good for fitness and toning when used in moderation but when dragged through life in the form of overweight baggage, they can wear us down rather than build us up.
When life becomes overloaded with the weights that drag you down, do yourself a favor…let The Porter take your baggage.
If wisdom is worth thinking about, it is worth having. Wisdom goes beyond being smart, intellectual, and/or knowledgeable. Wisdom is the sum total of all of these and yet is only available to those who recognize this fact. The following was gleaned from Psychology Today online:
Wise people generally share an optimism that life’s problems can be solved and experience a certain amount of calm in facing difficult decisions. Intelligence—if only anyone could figure out exactly what it is—may be necessary for wisdom, but it definitely isn’t sufficient; an ability to see the big picture, a sense of proportion, and considerable introspection also contribute to its development.
The Bible speaks often and well of wisdom:
If any of you lacks wisdom, you should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to you. James 1;5 NIV
Blessed are those who find wisdom, those who gain understanding, Proverbs 3:13
Get wisdom, get understanding; do not forget my words or turn away from them. Do not forsake wisdom, and she will protect you; Proverbs 4:5
Where there is strife, there is pride, but wisdom is found in those who take advice. Proverbs 13:10
For wisdom is more precious than rubies, and nothing you desire can compare with her. Proverbs 8:11
And then there is the age old adage: Early to bed, early to rise, makes a man healthy, wealthy and wise. Whether or not you place much stock in this verse, it is wise to consider the worth of wisdom.