Replace destructive tools with kindness, peace and courage

Published 9:25 pm Monday, May 23, 2011

There is a legend of a demolition man who was auctioning off his tools that he had used to destroy, wreck, and shatter lives. In his arsenal he had collected: pride, hate, envy, gossip, criticism, bitterness, and anger. He had marked up the price on all of the tools. He was confident that the purchase of just one of these tools would destroy an individual, a relationship, or even a community.

Yet, there was another tool that had a sign under it that said, “Not for sale.” Being a collector of tools, one day a shopper asked, “Why isn’t that tool for sale?” The demolition man chuckled, “I couldn’t afford to get rid of that one because that is my chief tool. When the other tools don’t work, I can always count on it.” “What do you call it?” asked the collector inquisitively.  The demolition man asked, “How would you feel if I don’t answer or sell it to you?” “Of course, I would be discouraged,” answered the collector.  “Exactly,” replied the demolition man, “It is the tool of discouragement.” Being a collector of tools and a negotiator, the collector asked him, “Why is that one so important to you?”

“Well,” he said, “I can pry open a heart with this tool and once I get into the heart, I can do most anything I want.”  Discouragement is meant to take the fight out of you. With all the bills that have passed in the legislature and with the current tenure bill on this week’s calendar, there is a temptation for thousands of Alabamians to become discouraged, yet I say to you be not weary in well doing.

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The question is how do you deal with hard times? How do you continue when it seems like everything that you work for has been taken away in a flash?

Circumstances change all of the time so it is just a matter of time before our circumstances change.

I know that the demolition team is using all of their tools but doing good always outweighs the tools of pride, hate, envy, gossip, criticism, bitterness, anger, and discouragement.

Let us not use demolition tools; instead we choose humility over pride; love instead of hate; generosity over envy; fact over gossip;  praise instead of criticism; kindness over bitterness; peace over anger; and courage instead of discouragement.