"Bend"
(©2010 - By Bob Perks - http://www.IWishYouEnough.com)

3-25-2009 Church Within SOW Seeds Service - Story #582
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Welcome
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Greetings my Dearest Sisters and Brothers, and welcome again to Church Within's Story of the Week ["SOW Seeds”].

This week's SOW Seeds Story, contributed by: Bob Perks

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Story of the Week
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"Bend"
(©2010 - By Bob Perks - http://www.IWishYouEnough.com)

"Welcome Spring!"  That's what I feel in my heart and what I see when I look out my kitchen window each day.
 
Last week I began placing the small decorative flags in our yard which, early on in the season adds color to an otherwise drab view.
 
One flag says "Welcome" and the other, "Spring." I, of course, see them as an invitation to Spring to stay awhile here in a friendly place I call home.
 
I took the time to begin clean up.  I raked the garden and collected branches that fell during the long, cold winter.
 
As I began to pile the branches I had to break some of the longer ones.  This was a test for my aging body and I guess my ego.  Most of the small ones snapped easily and made me feel I still had it in me.  A few of the larger ones frustrated me and challenged my abilities.
 
I stomped, pounded and cracked my way through them. After all most of them were old, rotted and weakened much like I felt that day.
 
But in all simple things in my life, great lessons were learned.
 
Mixed among the fallen were branches too young to have given in to the winds of winter.  Most likely they were taken by the weight of the heavy snow and ice that felled many trees this year.
 
There was the lesson.
 
As I began to break the new branches I discovered how difficult it was.  I twisted and turned them every which way barely breaking through the bark let alone snapping them in half.
 
The obvious lesson was that I need to learn to bend under the pressures of life, not break so easily or snap when the weight of the world attempts to bring me down.
 
Then, with further observation I realized that some of the new growth fell because they were attached to old branches. The old branches crumbled under pressure bringing all down with it.
 
There was the bigger lesson.
 
Youth depends on the strength of the old. The foundation which they stand on, the very core that gives them life, must remain strong.  As adults we must not just provide nourishment for our youth, but we are responsible for our own health so that they can grow without fear of being brought down because of our failures.
 
Unlike trees, our youth can "branch out" on their own.  Although they stand separately from us, they stand on the foundation that we built for them.  That means we never stop being a part of who they are.  When we fall, when we fail to take care of ourselves in every sense of the word, we chance bringing them down with us.
 
The answer?  Make every attempt to be healthy in body, mind and spirit.
 
Oh, and yes, "Bend."

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Pastor's Quote of the Week
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When you encounter difficulties and contradictions, do not try to break them, but bend them with gentleness and time.

Saint Francis de Sales (1567 - 1622)

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The Prayer
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Dear God,        
        Show me Your way.

You ALL are Within the Infinitely Loving Embrace of our Universal Parent,

The Creator's Eternal Love to all of You,
Pastor Daniel

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