Why Bother Collecting Wise Words?

Why Bother Collecting Wise Words?

Some people like to collect things, sometimes for their value, other times just for the simple pleasure of collecting something.  My dad collected antiques as well as coins, specifically the Kennedy head half dollar. While still a kid, one of my brothers collected empty beer cans and stacked them on shelves in his bedroom, much to my mother’s dismay. My husband and oldest son stack up pieces of wood from their construction jobs. They use it later to build other things like cutting boards for Christmas presents. 

Oh The Things We Collect

A friend once told me how her husband collects mini toy cars. He uses the guest bedroom in their house for his display cases. Sometimes he sells some on the internet. I had no idea there was even a market for mini toy cars. Another friend told me how her husband fills up their garage with old radio parts and that he sometimes sells those parts, but not often enough so that they have space in their garage to park their car.  Once, a husband of one of my friends confided in me how his wife collects shoes. “She has seventy-five pairs!” he exclaimed. 

Some people can afford to collect art and still others display beautiful pieces made from blown glass. A glass collection would never work for me. Though I can admire its beauty from a distance, I’m too much like a bull in a china store. Objects made of glass does not last very long around me. 

 At one time, when I was a house cleaner, one of my customers accumulated more than 100 kerosene lamps. Dusting them without breaking them was a strenuous strain for my nerves. 

Someone once asked, “I’d like to buy you a birthday present. Don’t you have a collection of something that I can add too?”  They were crestfallen when I told them, “I don’t really collect anything.” 

But on second thought, I do. I keep up a collection of  words. Over the years, when reading inspiring authors, I write down some of their words. At first I wrote their bits of wisdom on note cards and filed them in a wooden recipe box. I even had categories for these quotes: authenticity, change, growth, pain, wisdom and trust. But the box all too soon filled up. So, I began buying “Fat Books.” They are not very big, but they do hold more quotes than a recipe box. So far, I’ve filled up six of these little spiral fat books. They are not in any particular order, but that is okay. Sometimes I like to sit and read a few tidbits of wisdom from them before I start my day. Something in there always makes me smile.

A while back, I made a birthday present for a friend of mine. She does not keep any writing journals on a consistent basis, but she’s often told me how she’d like to. For her birthday, I bought her a plain composition book and at the top of each page, I wrote a quote from my fat books filled with wise words. Sometimes she will call and tell me that she’s opened that journal just to read the quotes. They make her laugh, smile and give her encouragement. As of yet, they have not moved her to write. 

Why bother collecting wise words? Rereading words of wisdom can make us smile, encourage our hearts and remind us that others, like us, have tread the same path of life we now tread. Their nourishing morsels keep us moving  forward.