Tuesday, December 1, 2015

What I need

I've been on a reading kick lately.  Well, sort of.  A reading kick for me means that I actually finished a book in the past three months :)

I'm not writing today about the book that I finished (which was Till We Have Faces by C.S. Lewis - I pretty much gobbled that one up, it was so hard to put down!  I will definitely have to read it again.).  I'm writing about a little book by George MacDonald called Sir Gibbie.  MacDonald was actually a big influence in C.S. Lewis' writings.  I've only read one other book by him, At the Back of the North Wind.  However, of the little bit that I've read, I've quickly discovered that he is an author whose books I will continue to read.  He is so thought-provoking, very much like Lewis.  I've already filled up a page and a half (front and back) in my commonplace of quotes from Sir Gibbie, and I'm only beginning the fifth chapter!

There's a quote that I wanted to share, but first, a little setup.  Gibbie is an eight year old boy who pretty much lives on the street all day everyday.  He does have a father, but he's an alcoholic and neglects Gibbie.  For food, Gibbie relies on the charity of those with whom he comes in contact.
"These, the half-cookie, the turnip, and the dulse, with the smell of the baker's bread, was all he had had.  It had been rather one of his meager days.  But it is wonderful upon how little those rare natures capable of making the most of things will live and thrive.  There is a great deal more to be got out of things than is generally got out of them, whether the thing be a chapter of the Bible or a yellow turnip, and the marvel is that those who use the most material should so often be those that show the least result in strength or character."
I wonder why?  Is it because we, who have so much, take it all for granted?

(And by we, I mean me.)

It makes me think of Little House in the Big Woods when Laura gets her first doll for Christmas.  It's the only real toy she has.  And she cherishes that doll.  She loves it and appreciates it.

It makes me think of people in other parts of the world who have never had or seen a Bible, maybe because they've just never heard the gospel or because Bibles are forbidden.  But when they do get one, there's so much joy.

Is it because we, who have so much, do not stop to think about why we do the things we do?

(Me again.)

Is it because we, who have so much, do not slow down?

Okay, I should share another quote I wrote down (and then I'm going to bed because it's 10:30 pm and I don't know when baby girl will wake up!):
"Hardy through hardship, he {Gibbie} knew nothing better than a constant good-humoured sparring with nature and circumstance for the privilege of being, enjoyed what came to him thoroughly, never mourned over what he had not, and, like the animals, was at peace.  For the bliss of the animals lies in this, that, on their lower level, they shadow the bliss of those - few at any moment on the earth - who do not 'look before and after, and pine for what is not,' but live in the holy carelessness of the eternal now." 
I've been thinking a lot lately about slowing down.  I don't have to do it all.  I don't have to have it all.  I just need to be where I am.

I need to be mindful of my choices and get as much out of them as I can.  I need to slow down and not rush through life, trying to cram in more and more.  I need to be grateful for what I do have, what I'm given, and not take it for granted.  I need to be humble in my thoughts and actions.  I need to have an ear and a heart for guidance.

I need to pray.

I need to trust.


  1. It was just Thanksgiving and we have so many things we're thankful for, but does it really sink down deep into our hearts and souls? Wonderful reminders during this Advent season. Thanks, Angela :)

  2. Thoughtful quotes. 'Count your blessings' and a good reminder, as Dawn said, for this time of year.

    1. I always need reminders, ha! Thanks for visiting, Carol!