Food for the Soul

I remember a story that I read in reading class in second, maybe third, grade.  It was about a farm woman who complained that her house was too small, there wasn’t enough room, and she needed a solution.  So, she went to the village wise-person who gave her a possible remedy.  The wise-person suggested that on returning home she invite in the chickens and let them live in the house with her and her family.  The next day, she was to invite in the ducks and geese.  On the third day, the goats; the fourth day the pigs; and on the fifth day the oxen.  After one week of all of them living in the house, she could then let the farm animals return to their regular habitat and, the wise-person assured her, the house would be much bigger.  And, what a miracle it was!  After all the farm animals went back to the barnyard the house was so much bigger, there was nothing more that needed to be done.

I’m reminded of this because yesterday I got lost and when I found myself again things were much larger.  I had picked up a small piece of fiction and got lost in its pages.  I immersed myself in the time period, the setting, the plot, the characters and their struggles and joys and I totally forgot where I was.  When I finished and put the book down I had a new appreciation for my time and my place; my struggles and my joys.  Life was larger, more beautiful somehow, and totally filled with grace.

The escape into literature can offer us a wonderful nourishment for the soul.  If you haven’t done it for a while, give it a try.  It can be nothing but grace.

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