It seems I am incapable of sharing anything with anyone without turning it into a “teach- able” moment. I usually consider that a gift, but I am well aware that it can become tedious as well. Still I persist. Here are two quotes I found recently that I can’t resist sharing. So I risk tedium and hope I am sharing a gift.
The first is quoted in an interesting new book by Susan Spence-Wendell, Until I Say Goodbye, My Year of Living in Joy. It is not a Christian book, but is an inspiring account of a woman’s determination to not let a diagnosis of ALS ruin her last days with her family and friends. I recommend it. The quote is by Dr. Seuss: Don’t cry because it’s over. Smile because it happened.
This gem from one of the great teachers of small children (and anyone who reads to them) is for those of us, myself included, who have been brought up in “scarcity” mode – as in there is never enough love, happiness, affection, affirmation, time . . . to go around. It reminds me again that Jesus offers an abundant life and that I can choose to live each moment fully and expectantly, or I can chose to look backward in regret and sadness.
The second is by James Thurber who is quoted in The Gift of Years by Joan Chittister, a powerful book on “Growing Older Gracefully” which I mentioned in a previous blog. Thurber says, “I’m sixty-five and I guess that puts me in with the geriatrics. But if there were fifteen months in every year, I’d only be forty-eight. That’s the trouble with us. We number everything.”
This quote makes me giggle every time I read it, but it’s such a good word! It’s important to remember, I think, that time is an artificial construct – useful but deceptive. Especially when it comes to age, numbers mean nothing. Chittister comments on this quote: “To be over sixty-five in an age like ours is to feel bad even when we feel good. We are, after all, ‘old’ now. Except we don’t feel ‘old.’ And we don’t think ‘old.'”
Both of these quotes encourage us all to live in the moment where God is – and forget the “false narratives” we have been so carefully taught.