Whenever I’m going through a tough time, I try meditating, That’s the same thing as ignoring people except you do it while sitting cross-legged on the floor.
Recently, while meditating, but not sitting cross-legged on the floor, I was remembering – – – again, some of the special porch times we had living in a big old house on a hill with a porch that wrapped halfway around the house.
My oldest brother, Robert, had been in Alaska for two years serving in the Air Force. He was home on leave and we had finished supper and moved to the front porch to see who would pass by or who might stop and visit for a spell. As we sat on the front steps, Robert told about some of the survival training he had been through while in Alaska. He had spent hours in the freezing waters of the Bering Strait testing cold water survival gear. He had also been taught how to live off the land and in Alaska that meant learning, among other things, to find and eat ice worms without cooking them.
But as the stars began to come out, Robert pointed out the Big Dipper, he showed me how to use the two stars in the ladle to locate Polaris. “It’s the tip of the handle of the Little Dipper,” he told me. “I suppose I always expect it to be brighter,” I said. The way I hear it talked about, it seems it should outshine every other star in the sky.”
“It’s not valuable for its magnitude,” Robert said, “but for its steadiness”. He told me if I could locate the North Star I should always be able to find my way home. Then he explained how sailors and others have, through centuries, been able to navigate by the stars. It was reliable. The other stars changed position in the sky but the North Star was steady and dependable to always be where it was supposed to be and so could be depended on. Steadiness was better than brightness. Being dependable was better than being shiny.
That lesson stayed with me all my life. When I was an employee for someone else, I was dependable. I may not have been the brightest employee but there were none more dependable than I was.
As a married woman, I’ve been dependable and steady. My husband always could and still can, depend on me not to just be faithful but to be steadfast and dependable when he needs a helper.
As a church member, I have striven to be a faithful and steady church member. I’ve never been one of the shining lights of the church but you could always depend on me to be in my pew when it was service time.
As a friend, I’ve striven to be a steady friend to those who would let me be their friend. You know some folks just won’t let you be close to them but I’ve been a friend to those who will let me.
As a mother, I did the best and steadiest job I could to feed, clothe, teach, and love my children so they could grow into the person they were destined to be. I tried to show by example that one needs to be faithful to fill whatever role is theirs for that time.
As a volunteer, I’ve taken my volunteer duties seriously and tried to be where I was supposed to be when I was supposed to be there and do what was expected of me.
Time is like the Mississippi River, it only flows one way. No one can go backward in time but in my memory, those times sittin’ on the front porch with family are some of the best.
And yes, I’ve tried to be steadfast in reading the words of the Lord each day and there is much in His word about being faithful, about being steadfast, about being like that North Star.
Will I eventually hear from the Lord these words? Well done, good and faithful servant; thou hast been faithful over a few things, I will make thee ruler over many things: enter thou into the joy of thy lord. Matthew 25:23