During a winter storm a sparrow was seeking shelter beneath a broad stone ledge. Under its wide protection he was completely shielded from the sleet and snow which drove past him. Possibly, however, the sparrow may not have felt it all that a comfortable shelter should be, because he kept hopping restlessly about, trying this and that position, every change bringing him to a narrower portion of the ledge. Presently he had gone beyond the place where he had any shelter at all, and then he tried to recover that first nook. Now, however, he did not know how to get back, and so sat huddled miserably in a shallow corner, bearing the full driving of the storm.

There are times in human experience when our situation seems unattractive, perhaps even unbearable, and we want to get out of it, feeling that any change whatever would be an improvement. The leading impulse of thought at such a time is to act, to do anything, go anywhere, if only thereby we are changing our situation. But if we are trying to let God govern us, this is the point at which, above all, we shall make no move; and we shall take the rushing impulse as a warning that we need to stand very still, to look within thought and see if our motives are worthy of having action built upon them.

Overcoming Criticism
September 26, 1925

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