BABY MOUSE TUTORED BY MOTHER MOUSE

Once upon a time there was a Baby Mouse and Mother Mouse. They lived in a hole in the skirting board in a big, warm house with lots of cheese to eat, where they wanted for nothing. Then, one day, Mother Mouse decided to take Baby Mouse outside of their home. Waiting outside for them was a huge ginger tomcat, licking it’s lips and waiting to eat them both up. “Mother, Mother! What should we do?” Cried Baby Mouse, clinging to his mother’s tail. Mother Mouse paused, staring up into the beady eyes of the hungry cat. But she wasn’t scared, because she knew exactly how to deal with big, scary cats. She opened her mouth and took in a deep breath. “Woof! Woof! Bark bark bark!” She shouted, and the cat ran away as fast as he could. “Wow, Mother! That was amazing!” Baby Mouse said to his mother, smiling happily. “And that, my child, is why it is always best to have a second language.”

PONDER AND CONSIDER

Do you speak a second language? And by second language I don’t mean only “language” as the dictionary defines it, but also another point of view, another possibility, a different way forward. In other words, are you flexible enough to think outside your box?

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WRONG EMAIL ADDRESS

A couple were going on vacation but his wife was on a business trip.

The husband went ahead to the destination first and his wife would meet him the next day.

When he reached his hotel, he decided to send his wife a quick email.

Unfortunately, when typing her address, he mistyped a letter and his note was directed instead to an elderly preacher’s wife whose husband had passed away only the day before.

When the grieving widow checked her email, she took one look at the monitor, let out a piercing scream, and fell to the floor in a dead faint.

At the sound, her family rushed into the room and saw this note on the screen:

Dearest Wife,

Just got checked in.  Everything prepared for your arrival tomorrow.

P.S. Sure is hot down here!

PONDER AND CONSIDER

Miscommunication, conscious or unconscious, intended or unintended, can in fact shift the whole tenor of a conversation and deform what could have been a vacation with a taste of paradise into a dreaded visit that tastes and feels like hell!

THE MAN WHO SWALLOWED AN EGG WHOLE

Once upon a time a man swallowed an egg whole. He was afraid to move because he was afraid the egg would break. But he was equally afraid to sit still because he was afraid it would hatch.

Source | Adrian Rogers, Ten Secrets for a Successful Family, Crossway Books, p. 71.

PONDER AND CONSIDER

In this day when we are supposed to have so many devices to save time, I’ve never seen so many hurried and restless people! If the computer, the laptop, the cellular phone, and all of these other technological wonders are supposed to save us time, why do we have so little time for the things that  really matter?

Are you perhaps in that place where you are afraid to move and afraid to sit still, allowing yourself to be paralyzed in the process?

 

THE DUCKLING

The Sufi saint Shams of Tabriz tells the following story about himself:

I have been considered a misfit since my childhood. No one seemed to understand me. My own father once said to me, “You are not mad enough to be put in a madhouse, and not withdrawn enough to be put in a monastery. I don’t know what to do with you.”

I replied, “A duck’s egg was once put under a hen. When the egg hatched the duckling walked about with the mother hen until they came to a pond. The duckling went straight into the water. The hen stayed clucking anxiously on land. Now, dear father, I have walked into the ocean and find in it my home. You can hardly blame me if you choose to stay on the shore.”

Anthony De Mello, SJ | Song of the Bird

PONDER AND CONSIDER

  • Are you living up to your original vocation, your deepest call, that is?
  • Are you living up to your potential or perhaps leading a mediocre, non-committed kind of life?
  • Are you satisfied with simply staying on the shore or bold enough to risk entering the waters?

THE GRAMMARIAN AND THE BOATMAN

A grammarian once embarked in a boat. Turning to the boatman with a self-satisfied air he asked him:

‘Have you ever studied grammar?’

‘No,’ replied the boatman.

‘Then half your life has gone to waste,’ the grammarian said.

The boatman thereupon felt very depressed, but he answered him nothing for the moment. Presently the wind tossed the boat into a whirlpool. The boatman shouted to the grammarian:

‘Do you know how to swim?’

‘No’ the grammarian replied, ‘my well-spoken, handsome fellow’.

‘In that case, grammarian,’ the boatman remarked, ‘the whole of your life has gone to waste, for the boat is sinking in these whirlpools.’

Source | Tales from Masnavi, Jalal al-Din Rumi
translated by A.J. Arberry

PONDER AND CONSIDER

You may be the greatest scholar in the world in your time, but consider, my friend, how the world passes away – and time!

FOUR SEASONS OF A TREE

There was a man who had four sons. He wanted his sons to learn to not judge things too quickly. So he sent them each on a quest, in turn, to go and look at a pear tree that was a great distance away. The first son went in the winter, the second in the spring, the third in summer, and the youngest son in the fall.

When they had all gone and come back, he called them together to describe what they had seen. The first son said that the tree was ugly, bent, and twisted. The second son said no – it was covered with green buds and full of promise. The third son disagreed, he said it was laden with blossoms that smelled so sweet and looked so beautiful, it was the most graceful thing he had ever seen. The last son disagreed with all of them; he said it was ripe and drooping with fruit, full of life and fulfillment.

The man then explained to his sons that they were all right, because they had each seen but one season in the tree’s life. He told them that you cannot judge a tree, or a person, by only one season, and that the essence of who they are – and the pleasure, joy, and love that come from that life – can only be measured at the end, when all the seasons are up.

PONDER AND CONSIDER

If you give up when it’s winter, you will miss the promise of your spring, the beauty of your summer, fulfillment of your fall. Don’t let the pain of one season destroy the joy of all the rest.

Source | Belief Net

HAIRS TURNING GREY

Once upon a time a very curious child asked his mother: “Mommy, why are some of your hairs turning grey?”

The mother, desiring to make this a teaching moment, said to her child: “It is because of you, dear. Every bad action of yours will turn one of my hairs grey!”

The child replied innocently: “Now I know why grandmother has only grey hairs on her head!”

PONDER AND CONSIDER

A teaching moment can never be based on a lie, no matter how small or seemingly trivial.