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Mon, Oct 2nd, 2023

Mother Teresa of Calcutta blessed this earth with years of love and service. She left a legacy of faith and perseverance. Wouldn't it be wonderful to have a conversation with this precious daughter of the Most High to ask her a few piercing questions. I, for one, would love to ask her how she handled herself when others spoke against her ministry. Or what was her response when she heard a lie or was exposed to gossip, sometimes from the very people who insisted they were great supporters of her calling. Surely, even Mother Teresa experienced those trying times when she and her Sisters were misrepresented or attacked 

Even though it is impossible to sit with her and seek the depth of her wisdom, our world has been left with many of her quotes and writings that would benefit us greatly. I will close today with one of her most insightful and perhaps most familiar statements. Before I remind you of her words, however, I would like to add some thoughts from a few of those with whom I have the opportunity to search for answers. I challenge you to identify the golden thread running through each.

  • During Saturday morning coffee hour, I asked daughters, Molly and Maggie, why they believe people would choose to lie and gossip about others, especially about those who have attempted to help them. Their answers: fear and control. Hhhhhhmmmm. 
  • My Pastor, GL Keene, is an amazing teacher besides being a wonderful pastor. He has led us this year in several life-changing Bible studies. One was about "not being offended" from the book by John Bevere, "The Bait of Satan: Living Free from the Deadly Trap of Offense". Jesus said "It is impossible that no offenses should come." (Luke 17:1) Offense will come. There will be gossip, lies, and offense. How we handle those will be the part we play. Hhhhhhmmmm.
  • On a September Sunday, Pastor's sermon title was "War vs Warfare". In describing the "weapons of our warfare" he described the strongholds we fight against as "a fantasy of the mind that serves as a shelter in order to not deal with reality". The weapons we have to pull down these false shelters include prayer, the Word, the Body, and so much more available to us as believers.   Hhhhhhhmmmm.
  • My very intuitive and wise husband has told me that when a person has to speak ill of another, it is due to the fact that the one speaking is actually very insecure and must elevate himself or herself by tearing down the other person. Yep....hhhhhhmmmm. 
  • One more.....nothing does more harm in the Body of Christ (this one is from me, but plenty of folks have made this declaration)....than the presence of disunity. And you guessed it! What brings disunity? Gossip and Lies.

So.....what do we do about it when we have become the target? Or if we find ourselves as part of the problem? Let's go to Mother Teresa for this one. 

Do it Anyway

People are often unreasonable, illogical and self-centered;

Forgive them anyway.

If you are kind, people may accuse you of selfish, ulterior motives;

Be kind anyway.

If you are successful, you will win some false friends and some true

Succeed anyway.

If you are honest and frank, people may cheat you;

Be honest and frank anyway.

What you spend years building, someone could destroy overnight;
 Build anyway.

If you find serenity and happiness, they may be jealous;

Be happy anyway.

The good you do today, people will often forget tomorrow;

Do good anyway.

Give the world the best you have, and it may never be enough;

Give the world the best you’ve got anyway.

You see, in the final analysis, it is between you and your God;

It was never between you and them anyway.

Well said, Beautiful Servant of God. Now....just one more challenge....did you identify the golden thread running through the insights posted in this meditation? Take just a moment and consider your words and actions.....now ask yourself....which role do I most often occupy???? Let God reveal the truth...."Am I more often the one speaking ill of another?"......or..."Am I more often the one on the receiving end of another's malicious heart?" Either way......whatever God has called you to do, get your heart and your mind right......and, you guessed it.....Do It Anyway!