The Noble Things of Life – Focus Scripture: Philippians 4:8
When I think about my childhood, Cousin Gladys fills my memories. She was director of the young people’s ministry at our church. She shepherded the Sunshine Band, the Red Circle, Summer Bible School, and many other programs involving children in their tender years. In many ways, she instilled in us a love of being in church and an acute awareness of who God is. She taught us how to focus our attention on the noble things of life.
She had her hand in everything we did as children at church. She was the one who taught us our speeches at Easter and Christmas. She directed the plays in which we performed. And when trips were organized to our denominational conventions, she was behind the planning. I used to say jokingly that every time the doors of the church were open, Cousin Gladys was there to greet us. We learned from her example that when circumstances are overwhelming, we could find refuge in the secret of God’s tabernacle.
Make no mistake about it; there is wisdom to be gleaned from Cousin Gladys and others like her – the mothers, grandmothers, big mamas, great aunts, sisters, friends, and saints who pressed onward each day in the face of tremendous odds against them. I guess my foremothers could have wallowed in their misery. God knows their suffering was great enough. But what would have been the point of such self-indulgence?
My foremothers taught me that life is what it is and that we should make the best of what we have. The mere fact that these women survived and came out stronger in the process has encouraged me, fortified my faith and given me peace. And I believe one source of that peace comes from my dwelling on the noble things of life.
Loving God, when things are not going as well as I think they should, I pray that you help me not to dwell on the negative but to consider the noble ideas of life. Amen.