Something old, something borrowed, something blue . . .
OK it’s for weddings, but that’s a happy time, so why can’t we borrow it for another happy time, which is our wish for everyone today, tomorrow and in the days ahead.
To begin some old wisdom from an English lady in old English:
1) Never lose any time. I do not think that lost which is spent in amusement or recreation every day, but always be in the habit of being employed.
2) Never err the least in truth.
3) Never say an ill thing of a person when thou cant say a good thing of him. Not only speak charitabley, but feel so.
4) Never be irritable or unkind to anybody.
5) Never indulge thyself in luxuries that are not necessary.
6) Do all things with consideration, and when thy path to act right is most difficult, put confidence in that Power alone which is able to assist thee, and exert thine own powers as far as they go.
Elizabeth Fry, 1780-1845, was an English prison reformer who changed things in English prisons, especially for women and children, and whose work continues through her inspiration. The first Elizabeth Fry Society was established in Vancouver in 1939. There are now 21 across Canada.
Remarkable isn’t it, wisdom, unlike fashion, never goes out of style? It’s often tough to live up to but it’s always worth a shot, and it’s ever there when there’s need. It’s like planting a garden: plant the seeds of thought, and, though they may take longer to grow than our territorial flower, they grow in the hearts and minds of others to blossom decades, even centuries later.
Fry surely planted one with her life. A story which gives real meaning to the time-worn promise: “A gift that keeps on giving.”
Who travels for love, finds a thousand miles only one mile.
Alex, recovering from a heart attack, tells his friend his ambulance story.
“That fellow in the ambulance just took charge of cheering me up,” said Alec. “Mind you, I can hardly remember a thing he said, but he made a lot of little jokes, and it took my mind right off my worries. What a difference he made!” (Francis Fry’s Friendship Book 1978.)
He didn’t remember his name, but he remembered the man and his caring! Sounds like he gives a gift to every patient he carries, Christmas all year.
The words of Doris Lessing come from a blue book:
“A public library is the most democratic thing in the world. What can be found there has undone dictators and tyrants; demagogues can persecute writers and tell them what to write as much as they like, but they cannot vanish what has been written in the past though they try often enough …People who love literature have at least part of their minds immune from indoctrination. If you read, you can learn to think for yourself.” Thinking for yourself, isn’t that the best gift of all in a democracy? Oh, and as remarkable as a Blackberry might be, a good book can beat it hands down. A book runs without batteries; it can charge up a mind, and reach into the heart and soul of the reader.
Something new, and old and borrowed and blue…
A woman was Christmas shopping with her two children. Hours later, worn out from hearing both children asking for everything they saw, they were finally standing waiting for the elevator to go home.
She felt the way parents who don’t seem to be in charge do, running around seeking the perfect gift for every person on your Xmas list, thinking you should go to every party, taste and sip everything put forth, worrying about who we’ve missed and … you know.
Finally the elevator came. Pushing and shoving they crowded in, bags, kids and all. She’d hit the wall, saying aloud to the world, “Whoever started this whole Christmas thing should be found, strung up and shot!”
From the back of the elevator, a quiet calm voice responded: “Don’t worry, we’ve already crucified Him.”
A tip of the hat to wisdom, especially that in the heart of a child.