‘Do the little things’

Those words were reported to have been said by St. David on the Sunday before his death on March 1, c. 589. St. David, the Patron Saint of Wales, was a bishop and a monastic who lived a simple life of faith and practice. His words before parting this world were wisdom driven and were regarded as nourishing formula for the follower’s soul.  David implored his monastic brothers to do the little things that they had seen him do. He reminded them to be joyful and to hold on to their faith, their creed. ‘Do the little things’ are words of inspiration in Wales today.

These words are really not very complicated. These words are simple instruction. We get so caught up in our fast paced world that we often forget about the little things. For David and his collogues, the little things were what mattered. Their existence was meager and they prided themselves on NOT having any possessions. The Order of St. David had to focus its time and energy on what was largest in their lives – their God and their community.  Today our relationships are often pushed back to a place of less prominence while work and recreation take charge of our lives. If the demands or the responsibilities that others place on us are not enough, we often do a fine job of placing unrealistic demands on ourselves. Needless to say it often gets very, very complicated. So how are we “doing the little things?” How are we at tending to our relationship to the Creator and how are we cultivating the Divine in our relationships with others? Do we do the little things? Are we taking time to check in with those around us? Do we have conversations that reach beyond the weather?

I think my heritage (about 200 years ago) is Welsh. So I guess tonight I am calling myself to a Welsh like accountability. We all spend lots of energy trying to juggle everything, but if we could be honest I think we’d admit that we often forget to do the little things – at least I do! And let’s not forget the other parts of David’s instruction in that last sermon. Let’s be joyful. Last night we had our Wednesday Night Lenten Reflection – I was the Guest Speaker. Well, OK, not really a guest but the speaker. I focused on Archbishop Desmond Tutu as I really feel that he has figured out well, what it means to be joyful.  That high-pitched crackling laugh of his, is infectious and when I reflect tonight on St. David’s supplication to be joyful I think again about Dear Desmond Tutu.

So we celebrate the feast day of St. David and in Wales there will have been parades and no doubt celebrations. I understand that it any celebration of St. David is often finished with a cup of tea and a piece of simple cake. Sounds good to me…I think I hear the kettle boiling – I need to go tend to the little things!The Chir below is singing a classic Welsh Hymn. I bet you Know it!