6/8/2018 0 Comments
Thought for today:
"There are those who were born to make harmony with the world and their fellow being; perfect peace shall be their eternal reward. And there are those who administer faith, hope, charity and love. By their good works of example and their footprints of passage, a better life and way will become known to all who follow. Such human travellers are earthly beings clothed in humble garments. They have not yet donned their heavenly robes or assumed angelic form, yet they are destined to one day dine at the top table with heavenly hosts.
Too many good people in this world naturally and routinely emit 'goodness' in all they think, say and do, and yet, know not how good and worthy a person they really are. They consider themselves as being just 'ordinary' people, doing what any decent person would naturally do in such circumstances. The very source of 'goodness' that lives within their bodies from cradle to the grave is rarely acknowledged by themselves as being outside the range of human 'normality'.
And when examined closely, what precisely does such 'goodness' consist of that these earthly angels with their invisible halos daily express as a matter of course. Strangely, they represent the simplest of behaviour, and yet they are the most important things a person can do or have done to them. Indeed, their importance is considered to be of such heavenly magnitude that their continuation of such good behaviour is the only requirement that can automatically gain admission inside the 'Gates of Heaven' when their turn comes to depart this earthly life. Their body may take up residence at the other side of the green sod, but as their spirit is transported into more heavenly surroundings, their passing is greatly mourned by those who truly knew them and had been often touched by their 'goodness'.
And what are such virtues that guarantee heavenly admission and earthly remembrance? They include the willingness and ability to express love, to give, to take, to share, to forgive, to believe in self and others. They include conducting ourselves honestly in our expression and dealings with others. They involve having and showing faith in the 'goodness' of mankind, forever spreading hope where it is needed and is thin on the ground, and being always willing to give of oneself to others whenever the need of another is greater than ours.
Each of these essential human ingredients is possessed by all of us, though they may lay dormant and are not always displayed in our daily lives. That is why the 'finding of self' will always lead to the discovery of one's intrinsic 'goodness' and thereby grant natural access to, and expression of, that very same 'goodness' of character and wholesomeness of intentions.
As my mother frequently told me as a child, 'Billy, if you want to be a good friend, be a good neighbour and be a good person, all you have to do son, is to be your good self'. Some of the greatest qualities Mum possessed was her capacity to recognise the 'specialness' in us all and to believe in God, life and humanity.
Before I went on holiday in mid-May I attended the funeral of a friend called Michael who was a regular attendee at the Rock and Roll Club in Batey that Sheila and I went to weekly before my cancer and advanced immobility sadly curtailed the movement of my dancing feet. I'll never forget the very first time I met Michael as a stranger to the Rock and Roll Club. Upon entry, he took our ticket of admission, smiled, warmly welcomed us and throughout that first evening, he called across to our table and ascertained that we were okay half a dozen times. In short, he knew how to say 'Hello' and he knew how to continue to make a couple of strangers feel welcome. When he died, his funeral service was so packed that the mourners were literally having to queue in the cramped entrance hall and outside the crematorium. No better way had his friends of showing how to say 'Goodbye'.
In my 75 years, I have attended many funerals, but the sheer numbers of attendees always signify how many lives were daily touched through knowing and loving 'goodness' in their midst. Most of these much-loved and dearly departed didn't have medals or titles or civic honours, along with public recognition of their good works within their community. What they offered seemed little, but was in essence so much; deserving of a reward that no earthly power could ever grant. Yet, this gift of 'goodness' they daily offered to their fellow beings was one so great, that heaven itself can never fail to reward.
Love and peace. Bill xxx" William Forde: August 6th, 2018.