It’s been a great summer at the Wetherbee house so far…the kids have both enjoyed some new experiences, we’ve loved a bit of down time as a family and we’ve all gotten to sleep in a bit. Good stuff. However, there have been a few days when I’ve found myself feeling, well, crabby. It’s nothing major…just the little, irritating things that can creep into an otherwise lovely summer day and endeavor to ruin it…
- the ever-increasing humidity (my LEAST favorite kind of weather)
- a sore throat
- the unbelievably crammed closets upstairs that are SCREAMING to be cleaned
- the dog throw-up stain that won’t come out of the new family room rug
- the realization that my waistline has not thinned, despite the numerous ice cream cones I have eaten in celebration of good report cards or victorious pony league games. (go figure.)
See? Nothing big. No boulders thrown into the lake of my life. No tragedies or great sorrows. Just little, irritating bits of sand in my shoes that have the ability to make me cranky and crabby. As I took my walk this morning, I thought about all of this, and it reminded me of a meditation that I heard at Camp Miniwanca, way back in the 1980’s…
Make a Pearl
Most of us can afford to take a lesson from the oyster. The most extraordinary thing about the oyster is this. Irritations get into his shell. He does not like them; he tries to get rid of them. But when he cannot get rid of them he settles down to make of them one of the most beautiful things in the world. He uses the irritation to do the loveliest thing that an oyster ever has a chance to do. If there are irritations in our lives today, there is only one prescription: make a pearl. It may have to be a peral of patience, but, anyhow, make a pearl. And it takes faith and love to do it.
~Henry Emerson Fosdick
Back in my pearl-diving days, we learned all about the science of pearl formation…how the oyster responds to tiny shells or bits of sand by producing nacre, the shiny substance that surrounds the irritation, layer after layer, to make a pearl. It’s handy information when your kids are doing a science project or shelling at the beach. And it’s handy information in life, too.
I’m glad I serve a God who created a rather ugly mollusk capable of turning irritations into jewels.
Today, I’m going to try to be less of a crab and more of an oyster.
PS See you tomorrow for “Teaching Tips on Tuesday.”