Six Reminders

Leo - Colora, Maryland
Entered on April 15, 2008
Age Group: 65+
  • Podcasts

    Sign up for our free, weekly podcast of featured essays. You can download recent episodes individually, or subscribe to automatically receive each podcast. Learn more.

  • FAQ

    Frequently asked questions about the This I Believe project, educational opportunities and more...

  • Top Essays USB Drive

    This USB drive contains 100 of the top This I Believe audio broadcasts of the last ten years, plus some favorites from Edward R. Murrow's radio series of the 1950s. It's perfect for personal or classroom use! Click here to learn more.

1. I have plenty of money.

The main point of this is to recognize that God will provide whatever I need to accomplish His will. And, of course, whatever is not His will is never in my best interest, whether or not I can recognize how that can be. A secondary point of this is that the opposite of this belief – that I never have enough money – is a prescription for discontent, at best, and despair, at worst.

2. Changes don’t upset me.

Why should I resist change? There is no improvement without it. There is no growth without it. Indeed, there is no life without it. There are many things that do not change – truth, for example, never changes. God does not change. We are often not wise enough to calculate what should change and what should not, but we can be wise enough to deal with changes as they appear, as long as we don’t waste time resisting their actuality.

3. I don’t mind hard work.

By hard work I don’t mean physical effort that cripples us. I mean the kind of effort that strengthens us. That can be physical, mental, or a combination. Easy tasks seldom strengthen us or improve us in any way. It is the difficult tasks that help us grow, so we should embrace them, not avoid them.

4. I never worry or fret.

I had been aware that I was worrying about matters over which I had little control. Knowing that worrying itself accomplishes nothing didn’t seem to help me stop. So I began reminding myself once or twice a day that I never worry or fret. Eventually, I forgot about it, but then a fellow I had recently met made a comment that suggested he observed that I seemed to never worry about anything. Since then I have found many reasons not to worry or fret, and I have continued to remind myself of this truth every day.

5. I have no complaints.

Have you every noticed that people who complain a lot seldom seem content? Have you noticed that they seem to attract other complainers and repel contented people? It occurred to me that, even though other people don’t really listen to our complaints, we ourselves do, and it increases the disturbance within us. Complaining, like worrying, accomplishes nothing good, so I try to remember to avoid it at all times.

6. There is no reproach in me.

Reproach is defined in Webster as, “censure mingled with contempt; contumelious or opprobrious language toward any person; abusive reflections.” If I am critical of a person because of their choices, am I not being critical of the greatest gift of God, free will? And is that not a reproach toward God himself? All choices have consequences, primarily for the chooser, but also for others. All consequences are lessons; if you oppose the people you will reject the lessons.