1. Story I read this week…
Someone sent me this short story this week. (Thanks, Andy H.!) It’s a good one. It got me thinking. When I hear or read stories, poems, fables, or quotes, I take a moment, think about it, and see how it might apply to my own life. A lot of people roll their eyes at this stuff or just read the words and move on, but when you read things like this, take a moment and reflect on it. How does this apply to your own life? How can it make your life better? Can you use it any way to improve? And of course… who can you share it with that might need to read it or hear it? The last two lines are VERY powerful (I took the liberty of putting them in bold print)…
An elderly carpenter was ready to retire. He told his employer-contractor of his plans to leave the house building business and live a more leisurely life with his wife enjoying his extended family. He would miss the paycheck, but needed to retire. They could get by.
The contractor was sorry to see the good worker go and asked if he could build just one more house as personal favor. The carpenter said yes, but in time it was easy to see that his heart was not in his work. He resorted to shoddy workmanship and used inferior materials. It was an unfortunate way to end to his career.
When the carpenter finished his work and the builder came to inspect the house, the contractor handed the front door key to the carpenter. “This is your house,” he said, “my gift to you.”
What a shock! What a shame! If he had only known he was building his own house, he would have done it all so differently. Now he had to live in the home he built none too well.
So, it is with us. We build out lives in a distracted way, reacting rather than acting, willing to put up less than the best. At important points we do not give the job our best effort. Then with a shock we look at the situation we have created and find that we are now living in the house we have built. If we had realized, we would have done it differently.
Think of yourself as the carpenter. Think about your house. Each day you hammer a nail, place a board, or erect a wall. Build wisely. It is the only life you will ever build. Even if you live it for only one day more, that day deserves to be lived graciously and with dignity. The plaque on the wall says, “Life is a do-it-yourself project.”
Who could say it more clearly? Your life today is the result of your attitudes and choices of the past. Your life tomorrow will be the result of your attitude and choices you make today.
2. Quote I love (from a book I love)…
“People have enough to live by, but nothing to live for. They have the means, but no meaning.” -Viktor Frankl in Man’s Search For Meaning
I’ve read Man’s Search For Meaning numerous times. Here is a summary of the book (by Goodreads.com)… “Psychiatrist Viktor Frankl’s memoir has riveted generations of readers with its descriptions of life in Nazi death camps and its lessons for spiritual survival. Based on his own experience and the stories of his patients, Frankl argues that we cannot avoid suffering but we can choose how to cope with it, find meaning in it, and move forward with renewed purpose. At the heart of his theory, known as logotherapy, is a conviction that the primary human drive is not pleasure but the pursuit of what we find meaningful. Man’s Search for Meaning has become one of the most influential books in America; it continues to inspire us all to find significance in the very act of living.” You can buy the book here.
3. One more thing regarding COVID that made me go Hmmmm….
The new vaccine mandate put out my President Biden mandates all federal workers to get vaccinated and removed the option of weekly testing (which is weird, but not the weirdest part). The weirdest part… Congress is exempt from that mandate. Set aside your political positions and beliefs, and you have to agree that this is bizarre.