For what it's worth
Editorials by Ed Note
"I implore you to be prepared, take a moment to listen, to share, to be there.
Show there is hope, an answer to a pressing question, a new day before us."
There are times in our lives when we are faced with a choice of whether to help someone or not. Often that help comes in the form of a financial handout or the use of your cell phone but there are other times when the help that is requested is not so obvious. Often the request is subliminal, not voiced out right where you know what is needed. Times when the help comes from just being there, just listening, just having the compassion to stop long enough to allow the other to know that they are important and not ignored.
When you come in contact with someone it is certain that moment affords you the opportunity to edify them or even be edified by them. This is a particularly important moment in both of your lives. I’m not a Bible thumper and have some broad understandings of the ‘question of our existence’ but it doesn’t stop the realization that there are plenty of truths within the writings of all the religious documents. So, let me quote an interesting truth from the King James Version, “Be not forgetful to entertain strangers: for thereby some have entertained angels unawares.”
My understanding is there are no coincidences in personal contacts but countless opportunities. There may be something that you have to show, tell, or teach them. There may be something they have to show, tell, or teach you. Either way the encounter shows the time has come to see, hear, learn, and change lives. The change may be epiphanous or small but certainly always a timely one. Should you choose NOT to entertain this encounter both of you are missing this divine moment of growth and edification.
This truth has proven to change lives, others and my own. We can and do make a difference in the world with nothing more than a sincere compliment, a greeting or word of encouragement and understanding. I’m not saying that you should open your wallet to everyone that comes within your circle of influence, but I am saying they came within your influential energy for cause and in perfect timing. You have an abundance, open your Spirit and ears for you may hear or lend a word that will have a major impact on lives for years to come. How can we take the chance of missing this? What if your smile, an encouraging word, or even just a passing complement could save, change the course of, or broaden a life and you chose not to take part of that moment? The extended impact of this choice may not be one you would knowingly accept, but nevertheless will happen.
I met a young man on the Mississippi River Ferry boat many years ago as we both rode the same time every day. We began having exchanges of interests, thoughts, beliefs, and even some personal information not normally shared between strangers. I tell you this because one day this man called me and asked if I would “please come talk to him” at a time that was not our normal ferry ride time of talks. I told him that I was not going to be able to do so, I actually made up an excuse to not go, which I later regretted and never repeated. I did not go to talk with this young man as I never associated with him other than riding the ferry to and from work and just didn’t want to be bothered. I did not take into account that he obviously believed in me, trusted me, and counted on my time and advise. I later learned that he committed suicide that very day. My obvious thoughts ran the gauntlet of all the ways I was responsible for this suicide. I harbored the feeling that had I just met with him perhaps he would not have killed himself or would have at least gone on to live longer. Maybe have a better relationship with himself and canceled thoughts of taking his life as a viable option.
Eventually, I accepted it was not my fault, he was troubled more deeply than what I knew. However, I dropped that ball! I spent a lot of unnecessary energy thinking of all the possible consequences of going or not going but mostly, I missed the opportunity; one I will not be able to recover.
Although prior to this, I would often offer a compliment, helping hand, or a few dollars, after this revelation I am constantly open and available to entertain whatever ‘blessing’ is placed before me and encourage others to do the same.
My Spirit is broad, and my mind fairly open. I lean on the belief that every encounter is placed before us for a reason. That we live merely moment by moment and every moment is important and necessary to continue to grow towards enlightenment. Wisdom is experiencing that moment, learning from that experience, and applying what you learned. This is fact!
There are those whom I have spent time, energy, money, and compassion with who have moved on from troubled existences to fulfilled positive and enlightened lifestyles. People who have told me and others that I ‘saved their lives,’ which I feel is a bit broad, but who am I to say I didn’t? I no longer am faced with the question of what if I had not …, what if I made an excuse and missed the chance to make a difference? What if I missed what they had to offer me?
Remember the ‘entertain angels’ line? Was I their angel? Where they my angels? The answer to those questions is evasive at best, but the fact remains that my life as well as countless others is better because I refused to ignore the opportunity to share in the edification of us all. My life is better given the knowledge that I am there, lend an ear, and care enough to treat others as important and worthwhile individuals.
So, I implore you to be prepared, take a moment to listen, to share, to be there. Show that there is hope for a better way, an answer to a pressing question, a new day before us all. Another verse from the KJV Bible states to always be prepared to give the reason for the hope that you have. What is your reason? Mine is love, compassion, and mainly the knowledge that we all can make a difference actually does make a difference.
Let’s be vigilant to not allow the lies and drunken hypnotism of the world to stop what is truth. We are beautiful beings who are profoundly responsible for each other. The Quran notes that it is the whisperings of the Shaitaan [evil spirits who strive to create discomfort in individuals by whispering negative thoughts and rationalizations] and an attachment to the world, which prevent man from helping others. I declare, we are broader, more empathetic, and responsible than this. There are close to 8 billion people that reside within this world, yet the irony is that we often feel incredibly alone and distant from other human beings. Yet we have family, friends, associates, and most importantly encounter others on a daily basis. The deeper wisdom here is that in these relationships and encounters, each and every one of them, stand the opportunity to teach us something about ourselves and our place in the world and others’ purpose within our lives.
I give you this from my understanding: We are Spiritual Beings having a Physical Experience. We are here to obtain, create, and share the wisdom of our experiences, moment by moment. Therefore, live in the moment for the Moment is Good! When you are living in the moment and because the moment is good, you are also good! When asked, “How are you?” An informed response is, “The moment is good?”
When you encounter someone while living in your moment realize they are there for a reason, either to edify or to be edified. Do not miss this chance! Every moment: See what you are looking at, look at what you see. Listen to what you hear and hear what you listen to. Doing this will assure that your Spirit (you) will receive, achieve, and share what is offered to its fullest. This is Wisdom. This is Enlightenment. This is seizing the moment!
Always in Spirit and Truth
Thank you again for all your emails. I will continue to hold on to and entertain your feedback, ideas, and questions. I do hope I answer some in these articles, For What It’s Worth…
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