"How wonderful it is that nobody need wait a single moment before starting to improve the world."
As a fourth grader, I walked to and from school with a friend, weather permitting, but never regarded it as a hardship or punishment from my parents. I viewed it, if I gave it any thought at all, as a privilege.
My springtime sidewalks took me past large, old homes with wide front porches and tall trees in front. The tree branches reached over the street, forming a bright green canopy.
I don’t remember ever feeling a need to hurry home after school. No urgency or fear ever crowded into my childhood—my parents trusted me and our town for my safe arrival home.
I don’t propose to enshrine the “good old days.” They were good and they rendered lasting, positive memories. But memories represent the past. On the other hand, perhaps today’s society could benefit from the past. Maybe past virtues could contribute to the improvement and good fortune of the present.
Nothing is ever too perfect that a little improvement wouldn’t be welcomed. This principle holds true for America. Our country probably never has been perfect. Far from it or our history wouldn’t be speckled with wars and depressions and poverty and discrimination.
But the pock marks of adversity can serve as stepping stones toward a better today and tomorrow. In the throes of hardship, we long for something better. Something that could work.
That “something” contains elements available today. Perhaps they could be blended into a palatable recipe to ease fears and tensions. What are some of these ingredients that seem to be absent or neglected in our world today?
Respect for others and self.
Sacrifice of our time for the sake of family members.
Trust of one another and of our community for the safety of our children.
Relaxation instead of hurried stress, everything in proper perspective.
Every day someone longs for their world to return to virtues that worked in the past. Virtues that could work again if allowed a place of importance in today’s lifestyle.
Do you remember and long for a less stressful, safer time?
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