Thursday, March 22, 2018

“Good works is giving to the poor and the helpless, but divine works is showing them their worth to the One who matters.” ― Criss Jami

               For much of the time during the last few months, I felt really alone.  It seemed I was on my own, needing to provide everything necessary for survival all by myself.  After the last two weeks with my family here, I will never feel alone again, even after they have gone back to the States.  You see, I am a part of something much bigger that is family but even more than that.  It reminded me that I saw an ad on television the other day for a one-woman show on Broadway.  There have been many one-man or one-woman shows on Broadway and most have been very successful, but the phrase is very misleading.  There is no such thing as a one-woman or one-man show.  I’m certainly not one.  Not unless that one person also ran the lights, did the sound, printed the programs, sold the tickets, built the theater, did all the advertising, ushered the patrons to their seats—well, you get the picture.  It takes hundreds, sometimes thousands of people to put on a Broadway show no matter the number of entertainers on the stage.  It’s like hearing someone is a “self-made man” which is rubbish.  It just means that his wealth wasn’t inherited.  That man didn’t raise himself, grow his own food, kill his own meat, teach himself to read, or any of the other hundreds of life lessons that we need others to do for us.  We don’t come into this world alone, there is someone giving us birth and we never stop needing others.  It may take a village to raise a child, but it takes many more than that to turn that child into an adult with character, integrity, compassion, and love for others.  I thank God every day for those who took me to church as a child, who encouraged me to participate in what we called MYF (Methodist Youth Fellowship).  Some of my happiest times and most crucial to the formation of who I would eventually become came from those kids and their parents at churches in South and West Texas.  We are not left to ourselves, and as Christians, we have been assured that Christ will be with us forever.  Stop, think, and thank in person or by prayer all those who have cared for you, loved you, inspired you, and helped you become all the good things that you are today.  We are not one person shows or self-made people.  We are part of a community of believers that supports, nurtures, comforts, and gives us strength.  There is no happiness that is not made greater by sharing with others (and grandchildren) and no sadness that is not made softer by having friends and family surrounding us.  God knew what He was doing when He made us love each other.  Now, we just have to do it.

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