Tuesday, March 4, 2014

WHAT IS WORTHWHILE by Mrs. W.S.B., Iowa, 1932

It should come as no surprise that I nearly always post articles where I agree with the author's words. In this case, I do think that the author has some good points, but as you can imagine, I can't agree with her totally. Yes, I must admit that if we are neglecting important tasks in favor of quilting (don't look into my closets, please!) it is wrong. But in most cases I believe quilting has great value since it so often shows the "love and kindness" that the author mentions, and that we all should strive for.

One of the most loosely-handled expressions of the day is "worth while." Our living is so complex. Unless we budget time very strictly, and eliminate a great deal, we are apt to find ourselves rushing hither and yon, doing many unnecessary things and leaving undone some of the essential.

What is the yardstick by which we measure values? An older woman whose intelligence I greatly admire says, "Anything is worth while that we like to do." I wonder, might one not become very selfish that way?

Many women do things that to me seem time-killing. Cutting up perfectly good material and sewing tiny pieces together in an intricate pattern--enough of them to cover a bed! Yet, I cannot deny the beauty of it when finished. Is that enough,--just to have built beauty? Another woman,--and she has credits toward her doctor's degree in Home Economics,--has all of her washing ironed, even to turkish wash cloths. This is certainly not in keeping with my ideas of modern efficiency. I'm sure the college girl who irons them doesn't think so either. This heartsick old world need a lot of things more than it does marking time over housework.

It seems to me that the answer to what is worth while is service. Is what we are doing of any use? Is it making the world better, happier, kinder? I cannot name the author, but I read in a book by the title of this letter, "Only those things are worth while that go into eternity with us." That excludes worry, jealousy, anger and fear. It includes love and kindness.