Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Winning Words 8/10/11
“Better the cottage where one is merry than the palace where one weeps.” (Chinese Proverb) “The Shack” was an immensely popular book put out in 2007. The author sees the “place” where we live as a metaphor for what goes on in our life…the hurts, the frustrations, the feeling of “being stuck.” It’s easy to look at others and think that they’ve got a better “house.” It ain’t necessarily so. Be thankful today! ;-) Jack

FROM PR JS IN MICHIGAN: I always saw(my congregation) as my call and I had a great and fulfilling time there....was offered deals by other churches to double my salary but they didn't seem like the place where I should be....(my college) offered me a terrific opportunity if I would come back and coach their debate team....again the salary would have doubled but it sounded like a very boring life....The Chinese had it right on this one as far as I am concerned....////FROM JACK: The grass may appear to be greener from a distance, but reality can be something different. Yesterday I read that many thousands of dollars were spent by a Chinese village to paint a barren hillside green, when the same amount of money could have been used to plant trees, shrubbery and grass. Too many people are fooled by green hillsides.

FROM JS AWAY FROM HER DESK IN MICHIGAN: How did you know I'm at my cottage this week? I know this message was just for me. he he ////FROM JACK: Eat, drink and be merry in your cottage... for the routine at the palace begins again-- soon.

FROM LJ IN MICHIGAN: How True!////FROM JACK: You know that to be a fact, because you've helped people (with expectations) to move into cottages and palaces.

FROM OUTHOUSE JUDY: Love this one. We are thinking about a "cottage" on a lake's a pipe dream of ours. We don't want anything too big, just a little cottage with enough! "The Shack" was quite a book. It made me think. Today was a good day to read this one as I was sitting here feeling sorry for myself and all of my aches and pains. We do, as do I, have so much to be thankful for...even my little cottages along the way.////FROM JACK: When you look for a cottage, make sure that it has an outhouse. A privy helps us appreciate the coveniences of the modern world. We live in the world where we are.

FROM TAMPA SHIRL: And every day. Be thankful, too, for electricity. Ours has been off this morning and so the hurricane preparations are put to use. We are so lucky to have whatever we have today and to be able to appreciate our blessings.////FROM JACK: I 'll have to check the Florida weather. We had a windy rainstorm yesterday, and, thankfully, the power stayed on. As Mr. Rogers used to sing, "It's a beautiful day in the neighborhood (of Michigan) today."

FROM GOOD DEBT JON: I like the metaphor of feelings being where we live. I wrote a song last week about seeing and feeling life in totality. I've lost a lot of friends recently so perhaps I am a little more reflective than normal. My song is called Both Ends seems to me once you pass fifty you have a bit more perspective. Here is a link to hear the song:
////FROM JACK: A little reflection is good for us. I look in the mirror, and I see my parents (who are now deceased).

FROM PH IN MICHIGAN: good words. and if this recession doesn't end soon, a lot of people will be living in shacks! hope your day is going well.////FROM JACK: I read yesterday that 1 out of 11 people in their 20s doesn't watch the news. You must be older than that. "Don't bite your elbows!"

FROM PLAIN FOLKS CHESTER: Some of the people are merry all of the time and all of the people are merry some of the time, but not all of the people are merry all of the time. Abe Frieden////FROM JACK: You're spending a lot of time on the merry-go-round. But, if that's what makes you happy, go for it!

FROM JB IN WISCONSIN: Amen to that!////FROM JACK: You might like the poem by Edgar Guest which describes how a house is made a home. I've posted it on the blog.

HOME by Edgar Guest

It takes a heap o' livin' in a house t' make it home,
A heap o' sun an' shadder, an' ye sometimes have t' roam
Afore ye really 'preciate the things ye lef' behind,
An' hunger fer 'em somehow, with 'em allus on yer mind.
It don't make any differunce how rich ye get t' be,
How much yer chairs an' tables cost, how great yer luxury;
It ain't home t' ye, though it be the palace of a king,
Until somehow yer soul is sort o' wrapped round everything.

Home ain't a place that gold can buy or get up in a minute;
Afore it's home there's got t' be a heap o' livin' in it;
Within the walls there's got t' be some babies born, and then
Right there ye've got t' bring 'em up t' women good, an' men;
And gradjerly, as time goes on, ye find ye wouldn't part
With anything they ever used -- they've grown into yer heart:
The old high chairs, the playthings, too, the little shoes they wore
Ye hoard; an' if ye could ye'd keep the thumb marks on the door.

Ye've got t' weep t' make it home, ye've got t' sit an' sigh
An' watch beside a loved one's bed, an' know that Death is nigh;
An' in the stillness o' the night t' see Death's angel come,
An' close the eyes o' her that smiled,
an' leave her sweet voice dumb.
Fer these are scenes that grip the heart,
an' when yer tears are dried,
Ye find the home is dearer than it was, an' sanctified;
An' tuggin' at ye always are the pleasant memories
O' her that was an' is no more -- ye can't escape from these.

Ye've got t' sing an' dance fer years, ye've got t' romp an' play,
An' learn t' love the things ye have by usin' 'em each day;
Even the roses 'round the porch must blossom year by year
Afore they 'come a part o' ye, suggestin' someone dear
Who used t' love 'em long ago, an' trained 'em jes' t' run
The way they do, so's they would get the early mornin' sun;
Ye've got t' love each brick an' stone from cellar up t' dome:
It takes a heap o' livin' in a house t' make it home.

FROM PEPPERMINT MARY: Have you ever seen the film,"the enchanted cottage"?//// FROM JACK: No, but I read this synopsis: When pilot Oliver Bradford (Robert Young) is disfigured by war wounds, he hides from his family (Spring Byington) and fiancée (Hillary Brooke), renting a cottage from Mrs. Minnett (Mildred Natwick). Laura Pennington (Dorothy McGuire) is a shy, homely maid who tidies up the place. Oliver and Laura gradually fall in love and discover that their feelings for each other have mysteriously transformed them. He appears handsome to her, and she seems beautiful to him. This is only perceived by the two lovers (and the audience), not by others. Laura comes to believe that the cottage is "enchanted" because it was once often rented to honeymoon couples. In 1945, I was watching movies like, Zombies on Broadway.

FROM JO IN MICHIGAN: I just had to chime in on this take is that "it's all relative".////FROM JACK: You're right. Life is how you make it, or how you take it.

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