This is a breath of fresh air for a suffocating world of ungrace, cynicism, self-centredness, self-pity and plain old fashioned self-righteousness. OUCH! All of us get poked here!
“ In his classic The Imitation of Christ, Thomas à Kempis urges the reader to ‘enjoy being unknown and regarded as nothing.’ What he means is the ability to persist through tedium, to survive without the oxygen of recognition, praise and stroking, to do some good things every day which are seen only by God. Most of us start life as the centre of the universe, being stroked and attended to. Baby’s every smile and whimper is responded to and noted. It is an addictive experience, and it is hard to get used to being just one of a family, and later one of a whole class or school, barely noticed. When children suffer undue neglect or distress, the effects can reveal themselves in adult life. Some people, like pop stars and notice-boxes, never recover from the addiction, never climb out of those infantile lowlands. They find it impossible to survive without notice and applause, and spend their energies seeking it. They never fit themselves for the higher ground where the oxygen of appreciation is thinner, and they have to survive, as à Kempis says, unknown and hardly noticed. For all but his last three years, Jesus was happy to live a hidden life. That is where most of the good in this world is accomplished, by parents, carers, and all who keep going through the daily offering of their unregarded service. “