Saturday, February 14, 2015

Happy Life

Curious where happy comes from?

The Middle East has long been a clash of ideologies.  There was this Turkish radical who made his way to Syria, Greece, and beyond, campaigning hard for individual and cultural change.

Among the elements of his liberal agenda, backfilling the gap for the poor and famine relief.  He would fundraise rather aggressively and oversee the assistance efforts personally or via trusted associates.

He spent 18 months in a city about halfway between Sparta and Athens.  Although it was years after the historical conflict, it was still an interesting place, I'm sure.

Like reformers before and since, he was fairly well received by common folks, but found himself in trouble with governments and the elite.  In Italy years later, it finally cost him his life, but he had a large audience by then.  He was passionate about his message, and many were caught up and changed by it.

His thoughts on happy living?  He quotes his mentor on the subject, that you'll be a lot happier if you give than if you don't, and perhaps even happier than those you help.  Kindness is priceless.

A  world-changer and help-bringer, he's made an impact on us and on our cultural values.  Today, his message is as relevant as it was when he first offered it to the first century church.  There's much more, of course.

Thanks, and a hat tip to Saul (aka, Paul) from Tarsus, Turkey.
Acts 20:35 is perhaps a place to start, if you're curious about the fellow.

Others have understood the importance of caring for those in need. Six centuries later, we hear, "The one who looks after a widow or a poor person is like a warrior who fights for God's cause, or like him who performs prayers all the night and fasts all the day."