Wednesday, July 15, 2009

life notes

I am reading Marian Wright Edelman's newest book entitled The Sea is so Wide and My Boat is so Small. Each chapter is a "letter" to someone or some entity in which she gives her thoughts and advice for a better world. In the chapter entitled "A Letter to Young People: Anchors and Sails for Life's Voyage," she provides a list of maxims by which to live. Her thoughts should be carved on our doorframes as a reminder fo how to live each day:

- You are far more than any test can measure. No test can predict the quality and worth of your life or the contributions you can make.

- You do not always have to win to win. Sometimes losing is winning and sometimes winning is losing.

- Do your part, however small.

- Give a good day.

- Be a sower. Keep planting and watering seeds of hope and help. Don’t let others discourage you.

- Just do the work and don’t worry about the credit.

- Be humble and grateful for life.

- Struggle, struggle, struggle to develop a nonviolent heart in our violent culture and world.

- Learn to be still and listen to the silence within you.

- Live as if you like yourself. It might happen. Live as if you like others. It might happen.

- Be prepared to sacrifice and persevere for what you believe.

- Do not die before you die.

- Be kind.

- Don’t be afraid to leave comfortable shores. Life’s a very big and beautiful sea even if it does get scary sometimes.

- Keep saying the truth and holding on to your beliefs even if it appears no one is listening.

- Don’t give up too soon or before you have done your best and even better than your best.

- Aim high and work very hard to reach your goal.

- Serve. Do something for others.

- Choose work that promotes life not death.

- Do not fear criticism or let others define you.

- Recognize that you are a global citizen and must compete with peers from China, Japan, India, and all around the globe. Inform yourself about our world and its people. We are all interdependent.

- Dream beyond the moment.

- Faith and doubt are twins.

- Do not give in to that which is easy or convenient. Live intentionally and mindful of the impact of your actions on others.

I have been a fan of Marian Wright Edelman since reading her book of prayers entitled Guide My Feet. I recommend both books to you, and hope that you will embrace the spirit of this amazing woman.

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