Wisdom Day 11 December 2016: Skin-Deep Stuff

Like a gold ring in a pig’s snout
    is a beautiful face on an empty head. (The Book of Proverbs, Chapter 11, Verse 22, The Message, BibleGateway.com)

Which brings to mind:

 “Do not give dogs what is sacred; do not throw your pearls to pigs. If you do, they may trample them under their feet, and turn and tear you to pieces. (The Good News of Matthew, Chapter 7, Verse 6, New International Version, BibleGateway.com)

Have you ever shared some intimate, personal thoughts with an attractive face, only to suffer humiliation and a sense of betrayal when your words are fired back at you in an argument, possibly publicly? I have. Noooo fun.

Is physical beauty a guaranty of any virtue at all? Are there just plain ugly personalities that take any virtue or beauty of character as an affront that merits retaliation?

Is there some face, some attire you find attractive, exceptionally attractive? Is it possible to chart what’s behind the face and the threads from a safe distance, to get a sense of the true dimensions of the persona before getting within grappling range of demons, either in business or in bed? Fighting demons? It’s like wrestling pigs: Everyone gets filthy, but pigs enjoy it.

 

Praise attack

4 Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice! 5 Let your gentleness be evident to all. The Lord is near. 6 Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. 7 And the peace of God,which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. (Paul’s Letter to the Church at Ephesus, Chapter 4, Verses 4-7, New International Version)

Are you facing huge problems, challenges, pain, suffering, etc.? Strike back with praise! Strike back with thanksgiving. Do this from the very time you wake up. This will set the nature of your day. You and not the circumstances will own your heart. This is crucial, urgent, essential. This is the  martial art of a grateful heart. Be grateful in spite of what is happening to you.

This is not Pollyanna dither. This is how you free your mind and emotions to fight back, to focus on the objective, and to move forward in spite of overwhelming odds.

On the other hand, if life is just great for you right now, then be especially diligent in thanking God for your situation. This will guard against pride.

 

Self Control

28 Like a city whose walls are broken through
is a person who lacks self-control. (Book of Proverbs, Chapter 25, New International Version)

Oh, Lord, grant me today the neurology, biochemistry, endocrine balance and all other manner of personal state of mind and being needed to possess self-control. Please protect me from those challenges that surpass my capacity to accept with equanimity.