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Thursday, 17 October 2013

Old Brooms Know the Corner

(This reading is based on Psalm 71, read in accordance with the Revived by His Word initiative of the General Conference of Seventh-day Adventists).

"Now also when I am old and grayheaded, o God, do not forsake me, until I declare Your strength to this generation; your power to everyone who is to come. Also Your righteousness, O God, is very high, you who have done great things; O God, who is like You?" Ps 71: 18, 19

When I Get Old
Recently at work I had an interesting peak into what my future may actually look like from the perspective of work. A deliberate effort was made to invite our retirees to share in our annual colloquium exercises to start the new school year. Not only did they attend, but were allowed to also participate in the discussions. Seeing that, I wondered how I may be treated by a future generation of leaders, and what wisdom I may actually have to share with the young. It often takes the old among us to bring us back to the reality of should be our core concern.

                                  

Jamaican Proverb
A Jamaican proverb says, "New broom sweep (sweeps) clean, but ole (old) broom know di cawna (knows the corner). Ever notice how old brooms tend to be bent into a shape that allows them to reach certain areas more easily? This is like a person who not only knows what is to be done, but understands why it is to be done, and why you cannot cut corners, but must preserve the integrity of what is being done. To cut corners is to leave critical details unattended to. So the passageway of a room is squeaky clean, but the corners are full of dust, and this means the room is not clean.

Sharing Wisdom
Reaching the dust in the corners of a room is like understanding how God completes us individually. David, now gray-haired, wants to be able to tell the younger generation of God's strength, power, and righteousness. He wants to tell them about the vanity of life without God. His son, Solomon captures it well, "I have seen all the works that are done under the sun; and, behold, all is vanity and vexation of spirit." Eccl. 1: 14.  Our Saviour, the epitome of wisdom, counsels us, "Seek ye first the Kingdom of God..." Matt 6: 33.  In other words, sweep the corners first; the rest of the room is easy.

Commitment Prayer
Father in Heaven, we don't just want a clean passageway; doing things so people won't be alerted to our challenges.  Instead we desire a room that is wholly clean (corners and all); we desire that in our inmost beings we're true to you. Amen.

To read and/or listen to Psalm 71 and to read other related blogs please click here.