Photo by Mallory

Photo by Mallory


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Monday, November 16, 2015

Too Much or Too Little?

"Happiness is a way station between
too much and too little.”
–Channing Pollock (1880-1946)
                         American author & dramatist


Webster’s Online Dictionary defines way station as “an intermediate stopping place.” In the above quotation, we don’t know what Mr. Pollack refers to when he speaks of “too much or too little.” We probably assume his reference is to financial means.

Along with financial means, we can also think of too much or too little materialistic possessions: the big home versus the small one; fine jewelry and clothes versus ordinary ones; sustenance like food, whether we have enough or not; also, we could consider whether we eat too much food or too little.





If we have too much of any of these things, by simple reasoning we would have more than we need. On the other hand if we have too little of something, we would have less than we need. So, in the quotation above, since the way station is an intermediate stopping place, then at that intermediate or midway point would be the ideal place between too much or too little.

We could assign the word “moderation” to that midway point between too much or too little. The Bible speaks of moderation: “Let your moderation be known unto all men” (Philippians 4:5, KJV). By maintaining moderation, we’d be self-disciplined, self-controlled, and we would limit ourselves in order not to overindulge on anything in any way.

The apostle Paul comes to mind when I consider the opening quotation or read about too much or too little. He said: “I know both how to be abased, and I know how to abound: every where and in all things I am instructed both to be full and to be hungry, both to abound and to suffer need…I have learned, in whatsoever state I am, therewith to be content.” (Philippians 4:12, KJV).

Paul wrote that he learned to be content; being content wasn’t automatic. If Paul had been raised in the U.S. South, he might have written it this way: I have learned to make-do whether I have too much or too little.

I hope we all can find that happy spot between too much and too little, and make-do.


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