My son gave me a copy of “Around the Year with Emmet Fox: A Book of Daily Readings” for Christmas last year. I don’t always remember to read each day’s meditation, so I often find myself catching up. The one dated September 5 seems especially appropriate given the events of this week.
When Sandy’s fury seemed its worst and darkness was all around, “the captain was on the bridge.” As Fox reminds us, some things are out of our hands, and we have to trust that God will provide. The sun does come up the next day; in fact, we had a nice sunrise yesterday morning.
Here is Fox’s September 5 entry (published originally in 1952) :
The captain is on the bridge
The world is not going to the dogs. The human race is not doomed. Civilization is not going to crash. The captain is on the bridge. Humanity is going through a difficult time, but humanity has gone through difficulties many times before in its long history, and has always come through, strengthened and purified.
Do not worry yourself about the universe collapsing. It is not going to collapse, and anyway that question is none of your business. The captain is on the bridge. If the survival of humanity depended upon you or me, it would be a poor lookout for the Great Enterprise, would it not?
The captain is on the bridge. God is still in business. All that you have to do is to realize the Presence of God where trouble seems to be, to do your nearest duty to the very best of your ability; and to keep an even mind until the storm is over.
Here in the Washington area we were spared the worst of Sandy’s brunt. My heart goes out to those in New Jersey and New York. May their recovery be swift and their suffering short-lived.
Jacques Barzun RIP
The noted historian Jacques Barzun died last week at the age of 104. I wrote about his remarkable longevity in my May 1 post “Hats off to longevity and late bloomers.”
I still haven’t finished reading Barzun’s 877-page opus “From Dawn to Decadence: 1500 to the Present,” a book he started writing when he was 84 and finished when he was 92. As I said in May, “Hats off to people like Barzun who continue their careers long after everyone else has called it quits and to those underachievers who, through persistence and hard work, bloom much later in life.”
I learned from reading a lengthy obituary in The Washington Post that Barzun was the one who originated, “Whoever wants to know the heart and mind of America had better learn baseball.” The phrase is inscribed on a plaque in the Baseball Hall of Fame. You have to wonder, when he died on Oct. 25, was he rooting for the Tigers or the Giants?