Through the years, I have had the privilege to listen to some very wise men. Most of them were not filled with jokes or politics or mundane things that often occupy thinking. They were solidly based on principles that never change.
One was an aged minister and I was concerned about some things that were happening in the congregation. He said in simple words, “EVERYBODY AND EVERYTHING HAS ITS TIME“. Politics go back to Washington and Lincoln and FDR and Reagan. What about the Chinese dynasty. and Egypt and Rome and the Grecian Empire. Whatever happened To Indians that predate the coming of Christ by thousands of years? Everybody and everything has its time.
Tucked away in our sub-conscious mind is an idyllic vision. We envision ourselves on a long trip that spans the continent. We are traveling by train. Out the window we drink in the passing scene of cars on nearby highways, of children waving at a crossing, of cattle grazing on a distant hillside, of smoke pouring from a power plant, of row upon row of corn and wheat, of flatlands and valleys, of mountains and rolling hillsides, of city skylines and village halls. But uppermost in our minds is the final destination.
We close or eyes and think of the many Thanksgivings we have enjoyed. When it began with just the two of us around a small dining table. The many Christmases that came and went, finally gathering our family of eight souls. Everything seemed to have its time.
Our journey continues and on a certain day and a certain hour we will pull into the station. Bands will be playing and flags waving. Once we get there, so many wonderful dreams will come true and the parts of our lives will finally fit together like a complete jigsaw puzzle. How restlessly we pace the aisles, waiting for the station. When we reach the station – that will be it. We can feel the joy and happiness we have always long for.
We cry, “When I’m eighteen!”, “When we buy a new 450 SL Mercedes Benz!”, “When we put the kids though college!”, “When I get that promotion and finally reach the age of retirement, we shall live happy ever after!”.
Sooner or later we must realize that there is station called happiness. THE TRUE JOY OF LIFE IS THE TRIP. The station is only a dream, a mirage on the frontier. It constantly out distanced us. We are always wishing and waiting and wanting that which seems to be just out of our grasp.
It isn’t the burden of the day that drives men mad. It is the regrets of yesterday and the fears of tomorrow, and like the stage play “Annie”, it’s only a day away”. Tomorrow has never been on the calendar. Stop pacing the aisles and counting the miles and looking at your watch with anxiety and a longing heart. Instead, climb more mountains, love more deeply, reach out that hand for one that is struggling, eat more ice cream, walk barefooted in the early morning grass, swim more rivers, watch more sunsets, laugh more heartily, cry more easily.
LIFE MUST BE LIVED LIKE EATING A HEARTY MEAL – ONE BITE AT A TIME. Stop the weary feet and take a deep breath of fresh air, and listen to the songs of the birds. Everything and every one has its time. THE FINAL STATION WILL COME SOON ENOUGH.
“Today upon a bus, I saw a lovely maid, with golden hair; I envied her seemed so gay, I wished I were as fair. When suddenly she rose to leave, I saw her hobble down the aisle, she had one foot and wore a crutch, but as she passed a smile. O, GOD, YOU FORGIVE ME WHEN I WHINE; I HAVE TWO FEET THE WORLD IS MINE!
And when I stopped to buy some sweets, the lad that sold them had such charm. I talked to him and then he said, “It’s nice to talk to folks like you, you see,” he said, “I’m blind”. O, GOD, YOU FORGIVE ME WHEN I WHINE; I HAVE TWO EYES THE WORLD IS MINE!
Then walking down the street, I saw a child with eyes of blue. He stood and watched the others play, it seemed he knew not what to do. I stopped a moment then I said, “Why don’t you join the others dear?” He looked ahead without a word, and then I knew he could not hear. “O GOD, FORGIVE ME WHEN I WHINE, I HAVE TWO EARS THE WORLD IS MINE!”
With feet to take me where I’d go, with eyes to see the sunset glow, with ears to hear what I should know, O,GOD, FORGIVE ME WHEN I WHINE, I’M BLESSED INDEED THE WORLD IS MINE!
Near the time of the Apostle Paul’s death, he wrote these words. “I have fought a good fight, I have finished my course, I have kept the faith: henceforth there is laid up for me a crown of righteousness, which the Lord the righteous judge, shall give me in that day; and not to me only but to all them that love his appearing” (II Timothy 4:7-8).
THE FINAL STATION WAS IN SIGHT, HOME AT LAST!