Kitchen Catechism: Featured Articles
by Lois Donahue
During the Christmas Season our thoughts are focused on a very special birth – as well they should be, and, because the Christmas Season stretches into this month when we welcome in a New Year -- in a way, a new beginning -- this might also be a good time to give some thought to another birth – one we so often take for granted – our own. Since our birth, as well as the birth of Jesus, ushered a life into this world, perhaps now is an appropriate time to read "One Solitary Life" which was written about Jesus’ life and then read an adaptation of it written to remind us of the importance of ours.
ONE SOLITARY LIFE
He was born in an obscure village – the child of a peasant woman.
He grew up in another obscure village where he worked in a carpenter shop until he was thirty.
He never wrote a book – never held an office – never went to college – never visited a big city
He never traveled more than two hundred miles from the place where he was born
He did none of the things usually associated with greatness
He had no credentials but himself
He became an itinerant preacher
At thirty-three his friends deserted him – one of them even denied him
He was turned over to his enemies and went through the mockery of a trial
He was nailed to a cross between two thieves
While dying, his executioners gambled for his clothing – the only property he had on earth
When he was dead he was laid in a borrowed grave through the pity of a friend
Nineteen centuries have come and gone
Today Jesus is the central figure of the human race and the leader of mankind’s progress
All the armies that have ever marched, all the navies that have ever sailed, all the parliaments
that have ever sat and all the kings that ever reigned put together
Have not affected the life of mankind on earth as powerfully as that – - one solitary life.
(The following carried with it this explanation -- "This was not written for or about any specific woman – rather, it is something for each and everyone of us to remember whenever or for whatever reason we might somehow feel inadequate or unworthy."
MY SOLITARY LIFE
I was born as millions of others were born
I am different, certainly; but only unique in that the gifts I have been given and the choices I have made are unique
I have grown – attended school - matured - held jobs and selected my vocation
I live with the demands and the rewards of that vocation
No books have been written about me – no statues erected in my honor – no words of mine are recorded in the archives of history
I have neither gained worldwide recognition or amassed great wealth
I have done none of the things one usually associates with greatness
I have stumbled under crosses and survived through faith
I have shed tears and worn smiles
I have succumbed to temptation and begged forgiveness
My life has been enriched by friends and scarred by enemies
I have not learned to make all decisions wisely but I have learned to pray
I have sought mercy and accepted justice.
Time has come and gone and today I can still claim to be no more than a blend of strength and weakness.
Surrounded by all the great women who have walked His earth, by all the martyrs who have shared His suffering, by all the saints who have championed His cause – it would appear That I am inconsequential.
BUT I KNOW BETTER because
I KNOW for some reason I was chosen - and consequently
I KNOW I have a purpose - and above all
I KNOW I am loved
By the very fact that
‘One Solitary Life’