Monthly Archives: May, 2021

A Servant Leader

Leadership has intrigued me all of my life. Although I have worked with many leaders…it is as rare as hen’s teeth to find a servant leader. I mentioned to our Pastor, Kerry, that he was a servant leader. Many times a person who gets the opportunity to lead a group of people…seems to need a larger hat due the expansion of their head. We in the United States see servant leaders so seldom that we have almost forgotten what they look like.

Often the qualities of leadership and fidelity to truth are fungible to the grifters who hold leadership positions. Truth is treated as a situational commodity. As long as the truth does not affect the leaders bottom line…they attest to it…they cry…’Me Too!’ But, as soon as the factual truth does not comport with the popular lie…it is no longer worth protecting or standing with…if it affects the paycheck. We proclaim that if we had been in Nazi Germany we would have stood up to Hitler and placed our life on the line for the protection of our fellow human beings. When in the sunshine of our current time we see people who tell the truth…expunged…to make room for a leader who will lie…not for the sake of democracy or political party…but for political expediency.

‘The philosopher Diogenes was eating bread and lentils for supper. He was seen by the philosopher Aristippus who lived comfortably by flattering the king. Said Aristippus, ‘If you would learn to be subservient to the king you would not have to live on lentils.’ ‘Diogenes replied: ‘Learn to live on lentils and you will not have to be subservient to the king.’ -370 BC

‘We rise by lifting others.’ Robert Ingersoll

Embrace Who You Are — The Jazz Man

Cool and rainy today. MJ and I made a sojourn to Aldi’s this morning…to obtain some magnificent low prices. Our lost Gander was greeted today by a couple of his compatriots and they bawled at each other as if they had not seen each other in a month of Sundays. Our goose has become a […]

Embrace Who You Are — The Jazz Man

Motivation Monday

How is you motivation today? Are you excited to be alive and in the land of the living with all of the hopes and dreams that are ahead. It is sunny and warm in Southern Illinois with storms in the forecast. Much as our daily lives are…first sunny and then stormy and with snow and ice on occasion. I was thinking how important tradition is for our daily lives. It is the framework that we hang our life upon.

Our Pandemic has disrupted our traditions and in turn it has over turned the tables of our lives and chased out the money changers from our temple. Regular life in the Pandemic has been anything but regular…it has in fact been irregular. I cannot think of another world wide halting of traditional life for over a year…and the end is not yet upon us. Indeed our return to normal…will be a return to a new normal.

Holidays are in our future again…both the established ones and the vacation ones. Our ephemeral mortality has always been a concrete reality…now we understand that fact more than ever before. Each day is as if you are at the Louvre Museum, admiring the Mona Lisa, or the Musee d’ Orsay admiring the magnificent works of Vincent Van Gogh. Often we are eating the finest steak and searching of some cheap hamburger.

Joan Didion is an insightful author. She wrote of interviewing a pastor who told her that he was going to move his church from California…although they had just arrived there…to Murfreesboro, Tennessee…because God had told him that their California location was in danger of an earthquake. When Joan asked one of the congregants if she was aware that seismologist had said that their location was overdo an earthquake…she answered that they knew about earthquakes because the Bible spoke of earthquakes. Didion goes on to observe that this denomination seemed to rely on what their pastor told them that the Bible said for them to do, and that they relied little if any on science or the news or academic facts.

‘Speak in such a way that others love to listen to you. Listen in such a way that others love to speak to you.’ Anonymous

‘It takes the exact same amount of Time and Energy to imagine Wonderful things as it does to Worry, and the results are incredibly different.’ Zen to Zany

Learn To Lead A Small Life

Drizzle is the watchword of the day in Little Egypt. Jonathon and I traveled about engaged in the exercise of taking care of errands and to purchase Mother’s Day Cards…and a large Godzilla figure with an wonderfully articulated tail. In other words an eclectic day with Electric Larry. A Beagle dog just bawled as if he had discovered his prey and our lone Gander began to answer in a mournful goose cry… In my younger years I was determined to achieve all I could in my career and t traveled to every local that was within my budget…and to own every book that I could procure. I was always in a race with the clock and my means and my strength. I could not work enough hours nor travel sufficiently to ensure that MJ and Aaron and Jonathon had a good life and a well rounded experience. My University experience at Southern Illinois University @ Carbondale caused me to be like the little kitten who was blind…until his eyes were opened.

As the years have ticked by I have learned that contentment is often found in a small life. The trek to discover a few things that you love being involved in is an epiphany. Doing a multitude of things as a Juggler at the Circus is a stressful calling. Focusing on a handful of adventures and being immersed in them…is delightful. Jesus taught the magnificence of the small life. The religious scholars of his day were amazed at the simplicity of his message. ‘This is my commandment, that ye love one another; even as I have loved you. John 15:12. KJV.

Confusion is the watchword for our world. Millions of voices cry for low or no taxes… in order that their riches can grow into mega-riches. Millions of others cry for bread and a roof over their head. We in the United States feel that the Pandemic is as good as over and are planing our spring and summer and fall holidays. Three hundred thousand people a day are dying of Covid 19 in India.

As children we sought approval of our parents. Once we entered school we wanted to please our peers. In the workplace, what our colleagues think about us is essential to our feeling of self worth. For the boss or the person in power to notice us and approve of our efforts is paramount to our assimilation into our colleague group. Yet, so often we are living our lives for the tacit approval of others. When we do not receive that approval we are discouraged and depressed.

In the event that you are meek and mild and do not want to offend your peers…they will outline your life for you…they may tell you what recreational activities that you like and where you want to go on holiday. When you set out on your journey of higher education…you may have a major that is not near what you wanted to study…but you were persuaded to do so by your parents and others.

Small life is a happy life. Someone once said that you should keep your accounts on your thumbnail. March to the beat of your own drummer…it is the sweetest music that you will ever hear…