It’s been six weeks! How’s it going? Are you totally bored, yet? I’m not. It’s the same as it’s been for the last five years since I retired, except we seem to have more money in the bank because my wife isn’t shopping everyday. Hence the title of this post.
I’m going to share a very old Jewish story that may illustrate the point.
Once, an old man relied on his strong son to support them both. One day, a magnificent, wild stallion unexpectedly trotted into their stable. The son closed the gate quickly. Neighbors stopped to see the horse and said, “What a blessing has come to you! You can sell the horse for a high price.” The old man confounded his neighbors when he said, “Perhaps it’s a blessing. Perhaps it’s a curse. Only time will tell.”
Three days later, the horse jumped over the fence and was gone. Neighbors came again to comfort the old man for losing such a valuable horse. The old man said, “Perhaps it’s a blessing. Perhaps it’s a curse. Only time will tell.” A week later, the stallion returned with a herd of wild horses and led them into the corral. Neighbors came again to congratulate the old man for such a wonderful turn of fortune. Again the old man said, “Perhaps it’s a blessing. Perhaps it’s a curse. Only time will tell.”
The next day, the son was trying to break in one of the new horses and was thrown. His leg was shattered in two places. The village doctor, who fitted a tight brace around the son’s leg, was hopeful that the young man would walk again. “But,” he said, “it will require many months of healing and rest.” This was, of course, bad news for the old man. Without his son’s help, what would he be able to do? The neighbors came by to comfort the father. Again he said, “Perhaps it’s a blessing. Perhaps it’s a curse. Only time will tell.”
Later, soldiers rode into the village. They were conscripting every young man to fight but the invalid son was not taken. Not one of those young men returned alive from the war. The son eventually regained his health and was able again to help his father.
The wise father often said to his son, “We never know whether a thing is a blessing or a curse until the story is finished.”
You can read the whole lesson here.
Only Time Will Tell
COVID-19 seems to be a curse at the moment. Our rights and freedoms are being curtailed. People are even dying. And no one can give anyone else a physical hug.
But there seems to be a silver lining:
Man-made pollution is lifting. That’s one way to reduce CO2 emissions. But at such a cost!
In the end, when all of this is over, the world will breathe a collective (and clean) sigh of relief. But until then, don’t curse this disease, give it a divine blessing. Amen.