The last left hand turn in the small village had a small farmer’s cottage right on the outside of the corner. The two room house was Spartan from the outside but did appear functional. The key furniture item was not inside but out. A well worn, age old dark and comfortable looking chair sat right at the end of the stone wall at the edge of the house and the road. During daylight hours the chair was always occupied by an ageless man; white hair, simple clothes, leather sandals, a dangling cigarette, and an all knowing gaze greeted all who passed. Sometimes a friend stopped by and the two of them would chat and wave a cane or two in the air. On other occasions we caught him blissfully gazing out on the valley.
After several sightings, we began to wave as we passed. He readily returned our salute with a bright smile and air of confidence and peace.
It has only been a day and I already miss the old man. I looked at the tailored suits, luxury cars, and heavy watches and I wonder who is really rich. Is it our externals that make the difference? Does the fact that one account has more positive digits than another determine who has a home and who does not? Are we talking about today or tomorrow?
Having stayed in a small village near the old man I have the data on which to wonder aloud. Odds are that he does not have a telephone, most people do not. I did not see any antennas coming from the house so a TV would be unlikely. We did not even spot lights at night, though he must have electric power. He sits and I rush. He is and I try.
God offers us something different, something special. I am glad the old Cretian man reminded me of priorities. My choice this morning will determine if the future contains the problems of yesterday.
“Refuse discipline and end up homeless; embrace correction and live an honored life.” (Proverbs 13.18)