I was talking with a dear brother at Church again. Jim Brown is his name. I find him inspiring (or, honestly, I wouldn’t mention his name here). He always gives me hope, encouragement and thought. He makes it easier to go to Church when I’m tired or feel I would rather be asleep or reading something that speaks more directly to me.
It helps to have a Jim Brown in your life and in your Church. Someone whose wit and charm cuts through the fog, whose example reminds you to work harder and be more diligent, whose good cheer and humility inspire, guide, and yes, sometimes shame one into being a better person and striving to do more and to take better care.
It makes it easier to hear him when he tells me I’m wrong or should think twice. Which is something I find that I still need to do.
When I was younger I would think I was making progress, then find myself pruned back and in need of growing again, making progress at the rate of a miniature bonsai tree rather than something a little more robust (in a hundred years a miniature bonsai might be lucky to net 3 or 4 inches of growth, seems to me to be a very slow way to make progress). I’d always hoped to improve enough that I wouldn’t need the pruning, the work and the starting over quite so much.
I’m only glad that since I still do need to keep improving and need to be pruned over and over again, I have people like Jim Brown to make it easier.