Friday, June 16, 2017

Keep me reasonably sweet.

I read this wonderful quote in Gateway to Joy by Elisabeth Elliot.
It is attributed to a seventeenth-century nun.

Lord, You know better than I know myself that I am getting older and will someday be old. Keep me from... the fatal habit of thinking I must say something in every subject and on every occasion. Release me from craving to straighten out everybody's affairs. Make me thoughtful but not moody, helpful but not bossy. With my vast store of wisdom it seems a pity not to use it all, but You know, Lord, that I want a few friends at the end. Keep my mind from the recital of endless details-give me wings to come to the point. Seal my lips on my aches and pains. They are increasing, and my love of rehearsing them is becoming sweeter. I dare not ask for grace enough to enjoy the tales of others' pains, but help me to endure the with patience. I dare not ask for improved memory, but for a growing humility and a lessening cocksureness when my memory seems to clash with the memories of others. Teach me the glorious lesson that occasionally I will be mistaken. Keep me reasonably sweet. I do not want to be a saint-some of them are so hard to live with-but a sour old woman is one of the crowning works of the devil. Give me the ability to see good things in unexpected places, and talents in unexpected people. And give me the grace to tell them so.

Ain't that the truth!

Donna Elsie


  1. (((like)))


  2. "Give me wings to come to the point" --- I need this tattooed to my tongue. Thanks for the great reminder.

  3. Janice12:26 PM

    How wonderful! I will need "a growing humility and a lessening cocksureness when my memory seems to clash with the memories of others"

  4. Oh wow, Donna! This is *exactly* my prayer, too, although I could never have put it so perfectly into words. Thank-you for sharing this. I'll be linking to it from my blog soon for others who'll so appreciate it also. Love, love, love this--and needed it. <3 Blessings, Debra

  5. Amen, amen and AMEN!

    And it is so good to see your beautiful smile and your Tiffany Blue walls and your timely, gentle, wise words here again. I have missed you.

    Love you,

    1. This comment has been removed by the author.

    2. Ditto! It is great to hear from you again, Donna!

    3. Anonymous8:03 PM

      Ditto also (is that redundant?). It is so wonderful to read your words again- we have all missed you but I understand totally why you weren't able to post for a while. I am 61 and still working and some days I think, "I can't do this anymore", but then I tell myself, "Keep going, girl. You can do it." Refresh and restore over the summer. May you have lots of opportunities to soak up peacefulness and enjoy the hugs of those grandsons!

      Debbie Z.

  6. Thank you for the reminder, beautiful words.

  7. This is brilliant. I will be rereading this and quoting my dear friend Donna Elsie, who is quoting the wise Elisabeth Eliot.
    Love you.
    Mean it.

  8. Oh, that's one worth saving and even memorizing...if my memory was half what it used to be. ;)

  9. One of the best things I've ever read!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  10. truer words have not been spoken. thanks!!!

  11. Cyndi K G4:03 PM

    I love this, Donna: it is a little embarrassing to admit how much I see myself in these words! Thank you for sharing them.

  12. All of a sudden, I'm working on this, too. Oy.

  13. Just an echo of the above comments!

    Loved this and your prior post too. Can't tell you how much I related to the whole age thing. I work at the college, so just like you, I think I'm peer-relating to these emerging adult students only to realize they think I'm their Mom... I guess that's what happens when you get into your 50s...It's such a strange experience....

    So happy to see you again, Donna!

    --mary e. from wheaton (but only for a few more weeks - on the move....)

  14. Thank you for this post! I needed this today!

  15. Pamela12:06 PM

    This is just lovely! It's nice to see you back posting regularly again. I have always enjoyed your reflections and bits of wisdom about life, love and family. I will hang a small wall framing of this quote in my bathroom where I see it every day...has anyone else hung meaningful quotes at eye level across from the commode? I change them out every so often.... TMI maybe, but curious. Anyway, thanks Donna!


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