24th June 2012
Isaiah 41:6 each helps the other and says to his brother, “Be strong! ” NIV
While in Thailand a couple of years ago I was told of an elderly man who sells shoe laces on a street corner. Every day you could see him there with his box of laces. As passers-by went past they would hear his words, “Shoe laces for sale. Please buy some shoe laces.” Though he was blind he would have preferred to have earned a living without begging, even so, he had to try and sell his laces to support himself. There he was huddled in a corner dressed in a shabby old coat, with a pair of smoky glasses covering his sightless eyes. In one hand he held a box of laces, while in the other there was a clue to his situation, a white cane. However around his neck was a sign that aroused the interest of all who passed by. It was a small metal plate on which was engraved, “It could be worse.”
This is just the kind of message that gives people a lift as they passed by, and so too it can help each of us. Whenever an irritating situation comes along that brings unhappiness, it would serve us well to think of someone in a less fortunate position and say, “It could be worse.” There is an opportunity every day to make life a little better that it was yesterday and to seek out exactly what God’s ultimate purpose for our lives really is. We should not let our time be dissipated by complaining because we seem to be worse off than our friends or family. Rather, we should give God thanks for an opportunity every day to seek His direction ensuring that we spend our time wisely.
Happiness is not a place to arrive at. If this was the case, when we arrived we would never move. Happiness is the attitude of an individual. Unfortunately it fluctuates, but it can grow deeper the longer we live if we are in a close relationship with our God.
Those who are inclined to be self-centred, whether an executive, teacher or labourer, are always in constant doubt because of worries, fears, jealousies and insecurities. Those who live courageously and selflessly have firstly come to terms with themselves, secondly with their surroundings and importantly with God. Whatever their situation they have accepted their lot, and with God’s help, make the most of their lives.
Remember “It could be worse, huh.”
If you are better off than others, have you then, more responsibility for others?
Written by John Gummer – some content is taken from Living God’s Way – Rueben Youngdahl.