Charity should begin at home, but should not stay there. ~ Philip Brooks
You have not lived until you have done something for someone who can never repay you. ~ Anonymous
A good laugh is sunshine in the house. ~ William Makepeace Thackeray
We have 13 guests and no members online
Renewing Our Lives
With the help of Pastor Tim
Some things you keep; like good teeth, warm coats, bald husbands, and chubby wives. They’re good for you, reliable, practical, and so sublime that to throw them away would make the garbage man a thief. So, you hang on to the older gifts, because something old is sometimes better than something new. Who you know is often better than a stranger.
Here are my thoughts. They may make me sound old; old, and tame, and dull at a time when others are frisky, racy, and flashing all that’s new and improved in their lives. New spouses. New careers. New thighs. New lips. Gone are the days when a man kept a job for thirty years, and marriage meant forever. The world is dizzy with trade-ins. I could keep track, but I don’t think I want to.
I grew up in the sixties and seventies with practical parents - a mother, God bless her, who washed aluminum foil after she cooked in it, then reused it - and still does. A father who was happier getting old shoes fixed than buying new ones. And we had large garden for a backyard in which we grew our own vegetables so as to keep food on the table.
My parents may have been poor, but they weren’t destitute. They were resourceful. They were satisfied. Their marriage was good, their dreams focused. And because of this, we kids didn’t know we were poor. Their best friends lived barely a wave away. I can see them now, in Bermuda shorts and well worn t-shirts, lawnmower in one hand, tools in the other.
The tools were for fixing things - a curtain rod, the kitchen radio, screen door, the oven door, the hem in a dress. There was no need to buy new when the old had not been used up yet. My parents were into re-using and recycling long before it was the cool thing to do.
Things you keep. Don’t throw away anything until it is completely used up. So, we patched hand-me-down clothes and tinkered with a toaster to get one more month out of it. It was a way of life, and sometimes it made me crazy! All that re-fixing, reheating, renewing! I wanted, just once, to be wasteful. Waste meant affluence.
Throwing things away meant there’d always be more. But then my father died, and on that clear summer night, in the chill of the hospital room, I was struck with the pain of learning that sometimes there isn’t any ‘more’. Sometimes what you care about most gets all used up and goes away, never to return.
So, while you have it, it’s best to love it, care for it, fix it when it’s broken, and heal it when it’s sick. That’s true for marriage, friends, old cars, children with bad report cards, dogs with bad hips, and aging parents. You keep them because they’re worth it, because you’re worth it.
Sometimes the best gifts are the old ones that you have already received. Receive the old gifts again, by looking around and appreciating your life, the people and the things in it..for they are the true gifts of life.