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Gentle Virtues


10/01/2007 - Do you ever feel guilty for sitting down for awhile? If so, the root origin for consideration may relieve you from your guilt.

According to Noah Webster's 1828 American Dictionary Of The English Language, consideration comes from the Latin word "consideo" and its baseword, "sedeo" means "to sit". Think of Sherlock Holmes. For part of solving his complex mysteries, he sat and gave careful consideration to possible clues. We too can make important discoveries by sitting.

In the quietness of the morning, I like to sit, read and reflect. I have no mysteries tosolve for Scotland Yard but I do have a family to raise.

To have that morning quiet is like playing badminton with a raquet rather than a flyswatter. My parenting attempts for the day are a little less "hit and miss". (And thanks to my silly son John, I have tried to play the game with a flyswatter!)

Consideration has more than one meaning. It is not just about giving careful thought to a matter, it is also about being respectful and concerned about the needs of others.

In most cases, consideration is an easy virtue to show and it may only require seconds of our time. Holding a door open for someone, allowing a car to merge with more ease, sharing a genuine smile and saying thank you requires very little of us.

Consideration does not always involve interaction. We can show consideration without anyone being around. If we see a shirt laying under a clothes rack, we can hang it up and help a clerk keep a department store looking nice. If a shopping cart is meandering through a parking

lot, we can secure it in a cart return and perhaps save a vehicle from getting dented.

Children need to see both kinds of consideration demonstrated - the one that invites us to sit and the other that prompts us to be on our toes. Let's model both.

While consideration does not require much from us, it does require observation. We don't need to go around with a magnifying glass like Sherlock Holmes but we should take notice of the people and things around us. Today, may we be inspired by the great detective and give consideration to what may look trivial yet be important.

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