Wisdom to know the difference

God grant me the serenity
to accept the things I cannot change;
courage to change the things I can;
and wisdom to know the difference.–Reinhold Neibuhr

Where do I get the wisdom to know the difference? Where does that come from? This has been a tough week for me. I’ve given up on American democracy. It doesn’t exist anymore. We have a president who has assumed dictatorial powers and we have an emasculated congress with an anemic opposition party that is so worried about losing elections that they’ve just lost my vote in the next one. The New York Times has 76% of the American people seeing the war going badly.

There’ll be lots of chest thumpin’ this weekend by politicians paying tribute to veterans on Memorial Day. There will be more widows this weekend. There’ll be more families with only memories of loved ones. Lives cut short by politicians who only were focusing on numbers and votes. Which way is the wind blowing?

In Flanders Fields the poppies blow
Between the crosses row on row,
That mark our place; and in the sky
The larks, still bravely singing, fly
Scarce heard amid the guns below.

We are the Dead. Short days ago
We lived, felt dawn, saw sunset glow,
Loved and were loved, and now we lie
In Flanders fields.

Take up our quarrel with the foe:
To you from failing hands we throw
The torch; be yours to hold it high.
If ye break faith with us who die
We shall not sleep, though poppies grow
In Flanders fields. –John McCrae

5 Replies to “Wisdom to know the difference”

  1. Hi, yes the system seems so badly broken. Perhaps it is a test of faith. Do we have faith that all is well? It’s difficult at times like this. I just saw Al Gore on the Daily Show, and he said so much that was true, so much that we already knew. I said to him on the TV (I actually said this out loud), “Yeah, but what can you do?”

    I think I know something of how you feel, Don.

    Anyway, keep the faith. And keep bloggin’, I read you every day.

  2. As my most recent post indicates, I still believe that a change of course is possible, indeed urgent, even now. I worry about the effect that despair has already had on this country. We are like a clinically depressed person who knows that their life is crashing right before their eyes but cannot summon the strength to even move. But I also believe that even small changes can snowball into greater Change, and that we must continue to work toward that Change.

  3. Thank for stopping by and offering encouragement. As an admirer of Mahatma Gandhi I frequently wonder what the best course of action is. Satyagraha or soul force might be the most effective weapon or course of action, but how can that be effective here? Non-violent non-cooperation with evil is a duty as much as cooperation with good. One of the Mahatma’s quotes that has stuck with me for many years is, “All through history the way of truth and love has always won. There have been tyrants and murderers, and for a time they can seem invincible, but in the end they always fall, always.”

  4. Grant me Patience with things that take time,
    Appreciation for all that I have,
    Tolerance for those with different struggles,
    And the Strength to get up and try again,
    One day at a time….

    The second portion to the Long Version of the Serenity Prayer often recited in rooms of recovery…


  5. I too, can cause for dispear. However, I agree with Lea that it is a cause for us to examine our faith. God is still sovereign, and we are still his light & salt in a dark place. I often forget that I look to feelings and circumstances instead of keeping my eyes focused on Him. We know the end from the beginning as Scripture tells us, and we have a work to do for Him; I want to be salt & light. Keep looking up!

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