No. 737



One of my faithful readers, Paul Fleming, who lives near Marion, Ill., sent me something the other day that has tremendous potential to help us to better carry our burdens, or whatever it is that is weighing us down. The article has to do with stress management, and the Lord knows we need that kind of help today, with the state of our nation’s economy, the health-care debate and the breakdown of character, ethics and morals that have been the bedrock of our society. The article, by an unknown author, is very good and I would like to share it with you and ask you to seriously ponder what it says. See if it does not make a difference in your perspective and how you face the challenges in the days ahead.
It begins: “A lecturer when explaining stress management to an audience, raised a glass of water and asked, ‘how heavy is this glass of water?’ Answers called out ranged from 20g to 500g. The lecturer replied, ‘the absolute weight doesn’t matter. It depends on how long you try to hold it. If I hold it for a minute, that’s not a problem. If I hold it for an hour, I’ll have an ache in my right arm. If I hold it for a day, you’ll have to call an ambulance. In each case, it’s the same weight, but the longer I hold it, the heavier it becomes.’
“He continued, ‘and that’s the way it is with stress management. If we carry our burdens all the time, sooner or later, as the burden becomes increasingly heavy, we won’t be able to carry on. As with the glass of water, you have to put it down for a while and rest before holding it again. When we are refreshed, we can carry on with the burden. So, before you return home tonight, put the burden of work down. Don’t carry it home. Whatever burdens you are carrying now, let them down for a moment if you can.’
‘My friend, put down everything that may be a burden to you right now. Don’t pick it up again until after you have rested a while.
‘Here are some great ways of dealing with the burdens of life: Accept that some days you’re the pigeon, and some days you are the statue. Always keep your words soft and sweet, just in case you have to eat them. Always wear stuff that will make you look good if you die wearing it. Drive carefully. It’s not only cars that can be “Recalled” by their maker. If you can’t be kind, at least have the decency to be vague. Since it’s the early worm that gets eaten by the bird, sleep late.
The second mouse gets the cheese. When everything’s coming your way, you’re in the wrong lane. Birthdays are good for you. The more you have, the longer you live. You may be only one person in the world, but you may also be the world to one person. Some mistakes are too much fun to only make once. A truly happy person is one who can enjoy the scenery on a detour. Have an awesome day and know that someone has thought about you today’.”
Well, that’s the end of the article, and I believe you will agree, it contains some great advice and suggestions for any of us who sometimes let our burdens pile up and feel like the weight of the world is on our shoulders.
One thing that really helps me is humor. When I can laugh a lot, I am not nearly as uptight as when I am too serious. It’s been said, and rightly so, that we should take what we do seriously, but we should never take ourselves too seriously. There is an old saying that comes to mind that applies here. We can burn the candle at both ends, and it does produce a brilliant flame, but we are not nearly as bright as we think we are.
(EDITOR'S NOTE: Jim Davidson is a public speaker and syndicated columnist. You may contact him at 2 Bentley Drive, Conway, AR 72034. To begin a bookcase literacy project visit You won’t go wrong helping a needy child.)