Thought for the Week: Let us spread goodwill and appreciation in our small corner

A doctor in a city in northern England was once at a loss to help a patient he had only just met. This man, with his ashen face, was only 43 years of age and his demeanour reflected his world weary soul.
Rev Arthur ClarkeRev Arthur Clarke
Rev Arthur Clarke

​At last the doctor suggested: "Look Sir, you need to loosen up. Your should get out more, have a good laugh; go and see the clown Joseph Grimaldi, who is in town these days". Solemnly, the patient replied: "Doctor, I am Joseph Grimaldi".

Grimaldi was the archetypal pantomime clown. He was sufficiently popularly in his day to have the author Charles Dickens as his biographer.

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His claim to music hall fame was simple. In any show he had ducks flying out of pies, bees flying into bottles and chairs hanging from the ceiling. And this man who made the masses laugh, found life no laughing matter!!

Like many of us, his public persona of joviality belied his inner emptiness. How can we amid the wear and tear of life, arrive at what the celebrated English poet William Wordsworth called: "The dower of inward happiness?"

Firstly, let us make our peace with God. We are creatures with immortal longings. We cannot live by bread alone. The capacity for fellowship with the Eternal is deep in our psyche and will not be satisfied by accumulations, achievements, prizes or possessions.

Only God can fill the human heart. Making our peace with God is not a dreaded encounter like a naughty school boy waiting outside the headmaster's office. Rather this encounter is as a tired child hurrying home to a welcoming parent.

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Secondly, let us come to term with ourselves. Our dreams and realities are often at variance. The secret is to accept the talents entrusted to us, develop them and leave the rest with God.

Thirdly, let us brighten the corner where we are, bloom where we are planted and spread goodwill and appreciation in our small corner. And let us begin that life now!

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