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Saturday, June 5, 2010

Wetting the Towel that Dries You

Original sayings are as rare as hen's teeth theses days. It says in Ecclesiastes there is nothing new under the sun, and who can deny it? Words are repackaged and reworked but at the end of the day, the song remains the same. Soon we will all hear the mother of all cliches, the straw that breaks the camel's back in terms of our ability to endure tired old adages.

Many hands make light work but too many cooks can sometimes spoil the broth especially if there are more chiefs than indians, so if a stitch in time saves nine, it is high time this plague of aphorisms was nipped in the bud. Maybe the horse has already bolted and although we may be able to lead it to the freshwater of originality, we may not be able to make it drink.

There is apparently a cute little platitude for every experience and situation, but we've heard it all before. We should all pull up our socks and dig deep to unearth some new maxims with meaning. Maybe we could scrape the bottom of the barrel and see if there is any light at the end of this tunnel of torpid tale telling. At the very least we should tighten our belts and avoid verbal extravagance.

However, what we should not do is wet the towel that dries us, that is to say we should not throw out the baby with the bathwater or bite the hand that feeds us. That would be madness. We need words to communicate. Words have power. The pen is mightier than the sword. James talks about the restless evil that is the tongue and he tells us to be slow to speak and quick to listen. Be wise with your words.

Here is a trustworthy saying which rises above the pack, and deserves full acceptance: 'Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners-of whom I am the worst.' (1 Timothy 1:15)

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