April 17
Use what talents you possess;
the woods would be very silent
if no birds sang except
those that sang best.

Henry Van Dyke
(also attributed to Bernard Meltzer)


Today's Meditation:

We all have our own songs to sing, and they are truly unique songs.  While some people sing of business success or financial success, others will sing their songs of having touched lives through teaching or medicine or volunteering with the poverty-stricken.  Someone else may sing their songs of managing a fast-food restaurant or a clothing store--it truly matters not, for all are necessary in this symphony of life that we're experiencing.

Sometimes we get to thinking that our own personal contributions are somehow lacking, that what we give isn't worth as much as what some others are giving.  We see what others are giving as much more valuable than what we're giving, and that does a great disservice to us.  Our talents may not allow us to make something as beautiful or to do something as far-reaching as the talents of others allow them to do, but they still are our talents and they still are very legitimate.

It would be such a shame if your genuine voice was silenced, if it never was heard.  It would be a shame if no one ever saw the things that you're able to make that are unique to you and your vision and your perspective on life.  I will never find the success or reach the quality of many other writers, but I still write and I still enjoy myself doing so.  I don't worry about it not being good enough--I write from my heart, and if someone likes what I write, that's wonderful.  But if someone else doesn't like what I write, that's wonderful, too.  At least my work is out there for them to try out to see if they do like it.

You've been given gifts, some stronger than others, some less obvious than others.  But no matter what you do with your life, it's important that you use those gifts, as well as encourage others to use their gifts.  If we can do this, we can continue to contribute to the lives of our fellow human beings in very positive ways, and make this world a slightly more positive place each time we sing our unique song and allow others to sing theirs.

Questions to consider:

Why do so many people choose not to use their gifts and sing their songs?

How might we encourage others to make their contributions to the symphony of life through which we're living?

Why are so many people so quick to judge and criticize others when they do sing their own unique songs?  What drives us to criticize rather than encourage?

For further thought:

God doesn't give people talents that he doesn't want people to use.

Iron Eagle


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