On Things Learned from ‘Meditations’…

Verse of the Day

Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance
~ James 1:2-3 ~


So, I’m currently I just began reading (I tried the audio book thing for this a couple months back, and I really just can’t do it – I don’t know why, but I am completely unable to process books that way.  Other things, sure – books, not so much.  It’s weird.  And enough of that now.) Meditations by Marcus Aurelius, Roman emperor and philosopher.  There’s a lot to like in it, and one of the things I noted was the very first part: he spends a portion of the book talking about what he learned, and to whom he attributed the teaching.  The following bit he attributes to one of his teachers, Claudius Maximus:

From Claudius Maximus, in all things to endeavour to have power
of myself, and in nothing to be carried about; to be cheerful and
courageous in all sudden chances and accidents, as in sicknesses: to
love mildness, and moderation, and gravity: and to do my business,
whatsoever it be, thoroughly, and without querulousness. Whatsoever
he said, all men believed him that as he spake, so he thought, and
whatsoever he did, that he did it with a good intent. His manner was,
never to wonder at anything; never to be in haste, and yet never
slow: nor to be perplexed, or dejected, or at any time unseemly, or
excessively to laugh: nor to be angry, or suspicious, but ever ready to
do good, and to forgive, and to speak truth; and all this, as one that
seemed rather of himself to have been straight and right, than ever to
have been rectified or redressed; neither was there any man that ever
thought himself undervalued by him, or that could find in his heart, to
think himself a better man than he. He would also be very pleasant and

Just some really good things to learn for all of us: we can decide how we approach the world – do we approach every situation with cheerfulness or woe?  Do we live our lives in such a manner that people trust us?  Do we do our job in such a way that no one questions whether or not we did our best?  Do we do good and forgive?  All these are things we, as Christians, should be doing – it’s nice to see them echoed here in the classics as well; even from one who oversaw a government responsible for persecuting the early Christians – we’re all only human after all.

And that’s my thought for the morning…

Also, a few of my friends in Texas have been sharing this, so here’s a quick plug for the Texas Baptist Men.  They’re a group doing good work down in Texas right now, and we need to support those that are.  Don’t forget to find a way to contribute to the relief efforts in the Gulf region, and don’t forget to find ways to help out those in your own community!

Have an awesome Wednesday!


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