Saturday, November 1, 2008

Reading from the Daily Office

The lesson today comes from Ecclesiasticus 31:12-18,25-32:2 and the poem is from a favorite author of mine, Wendell Berry. Enjoy. It provides some good 'grist for the mill' to reflect upon.

Ecclesiasticus:  "Are you seated at the table of the great?Do not be greedy at it,  and do not say, "How much food there is here!"  Remember that a greedy eye is a bad thing.  What has been created more greedy than the eye? Therefore it sheds tears for any reason.   Do not reach out your hand for everything you see, and do not crowd your neighbor  at the dish.  Judge your neighbor's feelings by your own, and in every matter be thoughtful. Eat what is set before you like a well brought-up person, and do not chew greedily, or you will give offense. Be the first to stop, as befits good manners,  and do not be insatiable, or you will give offense. If you are seated among many persons, not help yourself  before they do. 

Do not try to prove your strength by wine-drinking,  for wine has destroyed many. As the furnace tests the work of the smith, so wine tests hearts when the insolent quarrel. 
Wine is very life to human beings if taken in moderation.  What is life to one who is without wine?  It has been created to make people happy. 
Wine drunk at the proper time and in moderation is rejoicing of heart and gladness of soul. Wine drunk to excess leads to bitterness of spirit, to quarrels and stumbling. 
Drunkenness increases the anger of a fool to his own hurt, reducing his strength and adding wounds.  Do not reprove your neighbor at a banquet of wine, 
and do not despise him in his merrymaking; speak no word of reproach to him, and do not distress him by making demands of him.  If they make you master of the feast, do not exalt yourself; be among them as one of their number. Take care of them first and then sit down; when you have fulfilled all your duties, take your place, 
so that you may be merry along with them and receive a wreath for your excellent leadership."


How do you handle it when you are slandered?

When have you slandered someone else? Why?

Bring your thoughts and offer them to God who will lovingly care for you and fill your souls.

Rev Deb

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