About five years ago, I developed an interest in truly trying to move forward personally and professionally in a positive way. After reading books by Zig Ziglar, Brian Tracy, Michael Hyatt, Andy Andrews, Seth Godin, Rabbi Daniel Lapin and Dan Miller and following their videos, blogs and podcasts, I have taken some of their advice to heart. As with all advice, especially when delivered through books and other media and not in person, some of it will apply to the consumer and some will not.
Probably the most important habit I have acquired is starting my day with a few quiet moments for me. Miller quotes Henry Ward Beecher in referring to the first hour after awakening as “the rudder of the day.” Hyatt echoes the importance of that time and has offered suggestions of how to spend it. In my case, I refer to it as my “morning read.” I start with a daily devotion written by Presbyterian minister P.J. Southam in The Presbyterian Heritage Daily Devotional. I follow that with a Bible reading and a prayer. And, usually, some pages or a chapter of a book. Right now, the book is the well-researched Meeting Jimmie Rodgers by Barry Mazor.
This morning, the scripture reading jumped out at me. In the King James Bible my Grandmother “Memaw” Kerr gave me in 1968, the authorship of Ephesians is attributed to the Apostle Paul. Now that the 2016 election is over, some words Paul wrote in his epistle are particularly timely.
I don’t consider myself an overly-religious person, but I realize that God often tells you what you need to know just when you need know it. Paul was writing to the people of Ephesus on the Aegean Sea centuries ago but I believe he might have had an idea of what the United States has just experienced. He offers advice I believe the people of the United States of America need to pay attention to now.
Let all bitterness, and wrath, and anger, and clamour, and evil-speaking be put away from you, with all malice: And be ye kind one to another, even as God for Christ’s sake hath forgiven you.
Ephesians 4, verses 31-32, King James Version, Holy Bible.
Text and photos copyright 2016 by Les Kerr