Mr Smith never rested in peace
As he was always in a hurry
He bumped his car into a truck
Mr Smith they had to bury!
Not a single day goes by without me hearing about some friend, relative or acquaintance having a heart attack, stroke, or some such stress related problem. For them and others on their way to the hospital do I write today:
A story goes that St John was stroking a tame partridge, when a famous hunter visited him. The hunter was carrying his bow and arrows with him. “What are you doing?” he turned to the saint and said. “Don’t you have a lot of work to do with the people of this world, preaching to them and changing their lives? Why do you waste your time with this bird?”
“What is that you carry in your hand?” asked St John.
“A bow,” said the hunter.
“Do you?” asked the saint, “carry it always and everywhere bent, taut and at full stretch?”
“No indeed,” said the hunter, “If I kept it at full stretch all the time, it would soon lose its elasticity; and the arrows would fly neither true nor straight nor fast.”
“The same with the human mind,” said St John. “Unless there are times when it is relaxed, a mind cannot follow its search for truth. The bow that is always bent will soon cease to shoot straight, and the mind which is always at full stretch will soon cease to be efficient.”
The following ‘Prayer for A Person in A Hurry’ is said to be popular among Glasgow businessmen:
Slow me down Lord! Ease the pounding of my heart
By the quietening of my mind. Steady my hurried pace with a vision
Of the eternal reach of time.
Teach me the art of taking one minute vacations;
To look at a flower, To chat with a friend, To pat a dog.
To read a few lines from a good book.
Remind me each day of the fable of the hare and the tortoise
That I may learn the race is not always to the swift
That there is more to life than increasing my speed
Let me look upward to the branches of the towering oak.
And recall that it grew great and strong
By growing slowly and well!
In my old car was a knob I pulled which increased the flow of petrol to the engine. I pulled it when there was a problem and the extra petrol, gave more power to the engine and pulled me through a crisis. But as soon as the problem was sorted out, I pushed the knob back, otherwise the car would either overheat or the engine jam with the additional load, for too long a time.
Does your stress knob need to be pushed back, your bow relaxed? Slow down and grow slowly, strong, and well like the towering oak..!
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