This life is short, and we are not important. Art by Saint Dunstan, philosophising by Tagore.
What a to-do there is over this tiny bit of life! To think of the quantity of land and trade and commerce which go to furnish its commissariat* alone, the amount of space occupied by each individual throughout the world, though one little chair is large enough to hold the whole of him! Yet, after all is over and done, there remains only material for two hours’ thought, some pages of writing!
What a negligible fraction of my few pages would this one lazy day of mine occupy! But then, will not this peaceful day, on the desolate sands by the placid river, leave nevertheless a distinct little gold mark even upon the scroll of my eternal past and eternal future?
Glimpses of Bengal Selected from the Letters of Sir Rabindranath Tagore.
*Commisariat ia a military term for the supplies of food and equipment.
Did Saint Dunstan count it a lazy day when he spent his time engrossed in drawing this picture? It is a peaceful picture, with the saint content to be close to his Lord, touching the hem of his garment. (Luke 8.44) Against the events in history that he was involved with as abbot and archbishop, he chooses to show himself as a stocky, insignificant monk, seeking the grace of God to sustain him in all his works.
May we value the quiet moments that come our way, and find time to put ourselves in the presence of God when they arise … not that He is ever absent when life is hectic.