Monday, February 24, 2014

The noble man and woman

"But the noble man makes noble plans, and by noble deeds he stands" (Isaiah 32:8); "If a man cleanses himself...he will be an instrument for noble purposes, made holy, useful to the Master and prepared to do any good work" (2 Timothy 2:21).

"Every noble life leaves its fiber interwoven forever in the work of the world." (Ruskin.) We all know that certain person who has enriched our lives beyond any human measurement; that extraordinary person who has elevated our existence into his or her serene sphere and inspired us to be and to do our best. Years later, when confronted with a crisis, we think of the person and the trustworthy advice given in love, and it enables us to go on. If we are so fortunate to have been granted such a gift, let us thank God every day for that person. I am most fortunate to have had several in my life!

Nobility is all about making the abrasions of life into sterling metal. "Noble metal" is a metal made of chemical elements that have outstanding resistance to oxidation, even at high temperatures.

Noble souls, though dust and heat,
Rise from disaster and defeat
The stronger;
And conscious still of the divine
Within them, lie on earth supine
No longer. Longfellow.

True nobility presupposes riches of everlasting quality such as virtue, tolerance, high standards and motivations, integrity, generosity, and graciousness. "But the seed on good soil stands for those with a noble and good heart, who hear the word, retain it, and by persevering produce a crop" (Luke 8:15).

"My heart is stirred by a noble theme..." (Psalm 45:1). What more noble theme can we have than Christ? We become what we behold and, by beholding Christ, we become gracious and lovely and noble, fit for earth and purified for heaven.

Patricia Erwin Nordman

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