"He who walks with the wise will be wise, but a companion of fools suffers harm." (painting, Edouard Manet) For years, when I was young and idealistic and had the energy, Clay and I sought to feed the minds, hearts and souls of my children on all that was wise, excellent, thoughtful, Biblical, eternal. As I have often said, we filled the treasure chest of their souls with the best, so that when they needed to draw from their souls the rest of their life, they would have treasure there--wisdom, depth, knowledge.
This was intentional--to establish the foundations of our children on wisdom. Consequently, this worthy goal set our own minds to find wisdom and to share wisdom. The very owning of our stewardship of our children's minds sharpened our own minds. It was a grid from which we lived life--to share, teach, instruct, read, think, cultivate and nurture wisdom.
I see the principle again of, what one sows, he reaps.
Lately, nightly, our family has been gathering and just talking, being friends, discussing life and ideas as we always have. Yet, now, mostly as peers and close friends, and not just as parent and child.
So, when pondering aloud to my family, how to make life more simple, how to set boundaries, how to continually restore and refresh so that I can have something in my own soul from which others may draw, my son shared this quote that he has been pondering from his own reading:
"To allow oneself to be carried away by a multitude of conflicting concerns, to surrender to too many demands, to commit oneself to too many projects, to want to help everyone in everything, is to succumb to the violence of our times." — Thomas Merton
Not only have I been taking this quotation to heart, and trying to figure out just what it meant in my own life, but I have also seen how much my children are a channel of wisdom for me. They gained the habit of thinking, reading, pondering, gathering wisdom in contrast to the voices of the world which surround them--and now they have become counselors to me. Their minds feed my mind now. Their deep thoughts guide me.
And so, sowing wisdom and seeking to surround the very air we breathed with wisdom for so many years, not only fed my soul, but educated those who would become my own counselors.
Now, I am really evaluating--How have I allowed myself to be carried away by a multitude of conflicting concerns, to surrender to too many demands, to want to help everyone in everything, to commit to too many projects............so, how have I succumbed to my times--the violence of overcommitment?
And so, daily, still, I seek the wisdom of counselors who can help guide my life, and now, it ends up, they live in my very own home.
Thoughts on these ideas, anyone?