Six Most Important Words
by Shane K. Andersen
Bible Readings: HEBREWS 7: 24-28 and MARK 12: 28-34
wish to talk about “The six most important words”.
There’s a plaque on my wall at home which says, and I quote…
“A short course in human relations”… and it continues with:
The six most important words: “I admit I make a mistake”
The 5 most important words: “You did a good job”
The 4 most important words: “What is your opinion?”
The 3 most important words: “If you please”
The 2 most important words: “Thank you!”
The 1 most important word: “WE”
The least most important word: “I”
The 6 most important words that I want to talk about here are these:
“I care about you very much” …which in essence, is what this plaque is all about.
During one of the wars of Napoleon Bonaparte, after a day of fierce fighting, sentinels were placed at strategic places around the camp site… to guard that camp site against surprise attacks. HOWEVER, one of these sentinel guards (exhausted from the fighting of that day), fell fast asleep at his post. It was shortly afterwards, that Napoleon decided to go out for a cool evening stroll to do some thinking, as we all have to do occasionally… To “GET ALONE” with ourselves. He noticed the guard asleep, walked up to him, in the cool of the evening, picked up his rifle, and… placing it to his shoulder, acted as sentinel until dawn.
When the soldier awoke with fear, Napoleon told him to “Calm down”… and be more alert next time. Napoleon, very easily could have picked up that gun, putting it to his shoulder, shot that soldier, because he had left a great big gaping hole in the defence of their camp site… the enemy could have come in and destroyed the lot of them. BUT Napoleon, knew and understood the reasons for him falling asleep, and took over the soldier's duties until dawn.
We applaud a humane act such as this, but now I wish to draw attention to an act of LOVE, which surpasses many-fold that caring by Napoleon… And that being the supreme act of caring by God, who sent his only begotten son, Jesus Christ, down on the Earth, to set THE example of caring.
What is caring to you? Well, I can easily tell you what caring IS NOT!!!! That destructive, wagging little tongue: I have a mental vision of Jean Simmons, painted up in the KISS Rock group, as the Demon, continually wagging that huge tongue of his.
And yet, often times our tongues, can be so sharp and cutting.
Or that person who is too heavenly minded for any earthly good. And the person who can only look for your faults, not looking at his or her own, instead of the good that their fellow human being does, or is capable of doing.
IN A LITTLE TOWN IN EUROPE… a woman came to confession, she told her EARTHLY SPIRITUAL FATHER (her local priest) that she seemed to continually be hurting people with her gossiping. So, she went to confession. And the PRIEST told her to get a big bag of feathers, take them to the top of the mountain near by, open the bag up and toss them to the wind. She did that the following day. She then returned to the priest, “Father, I have done what you wanted, now what should I do?” To which the priest replied… “Now I want you to pick up every single feather which you had just set sail to the wind”. She said… “Oh good grief, that’s impossible, those feathers are spread for miles in every possible direction”. And he said “EXACTLY!!!!!” “Each feather, is an example of each spoken word… There is no possible way that you can also retrieve those words, that gossiping, that you have been guilty of”…
bitchy remarks that tear at the soul.
*Those thoughtless comments that only separates us from each other and from God.
BUT CARING IS LOVE FOR ONE ANOTHER, MANIFESTING ITSELF in the things we do and say.
I REMEMBER AN INSTANCE OF A WOMAN with a number of children, her husband died and left her to fend for herself. And there are TWO PARTICULAR PEOPLE WHO STAND OUT IN MY MIND that went to visit her. Her local minister and this particular person who was a member of the local Communist Party. These two individuals had two completely different contrasting backgrounds.
The MINISTER visited every week, offering sometimes spiritual and secular advice, but every time he came into the house, WHICH, I MUST ADD WAS IN BAD NEED OF REPAIR, he would be continually tripping over this gaping HOLE in the Lounge room. Did nothing about it, just came in, continually tripped over it and would sit down, talked/chatted with her, etc.
WHEN THE OTHER FELLOW CALLED AROUND from the ridged local COMMUNIST GROUP, he almost fell into that very same hole, but on the next visit, he brought with him, a CARPENTER. Who, not only repaired the hole in the floor, but went to work FREE OF CHARGE, and repaired the rest of that fallen down home… IS IT ANY WONDER THAT THIS LADY STOPPED GOING TO CHURCH and joined this local Communist Group.
MINISTER HAD MEMBERS in his church, Carpenters, Plumbers, etc., BUT
HE WAS BLIND to the “Other than” Spiritual needs of that woman.
HE WAS TOO HEAVENLY MINDED FOR ANY EARTHLY GOOD.
**** I am very proud to be a part and parcel of this FAMILY (church) we call the UNITED FELLOWSHIP OF METROPOLITAN COMMUNITY CHURCHES, because in so many ways, it is a Christian caring family.
Let us continually be mindful, that we ARE a FAMILY, and as such, we all have human failings, we must be continually guided by the examples which Christ has taught us, continually teaching us day by day that we should care for one another.
REMEMBER THAT GOSPEL READING: (MARK 12: 28-34) particularly verse 31 which says… “And the 2nd is like the 1st commandment that you must LOVE YOUR NEIGHBOUR as yourself. Caring for your fellow brothers and sisters can only come about, if you truly have A LOVE, A SELF-ESTEEM,
A TOTAL ACCEPTANCE of YOURSELF.
When you know and feel good about yourself, then the caring for those around you, those whom you work with, those you commune with at church, those you pass in the street, will be more able to be loved and cared for.
Tonight, as you come to share in the Body & Blood of Christ through the HOLY COMMUNION, search your own hearts at this time. There is a song which goes…
“Break me, melt me, mould me, fill me, Spirit of the living God, fall afresh on me.”
This can truly happen to you, when you pray that prayer to God, and in doing so, ask God for wisdom, so that you may know, and you may grow, SPIRITUALLY and MENTALLY, attaining God’s Peace which has been promised to you, enabling you to have that self-esteem, which you and all of us need in ourselves, so we can be better equipped in the community in which we live.
GOD BLESS YOU.
©2005 Shane K. Andersen
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