One of my ministry mentors advised me to always be curious, not intellectually lazy!  Being a lifelong learner is a worthy pursuit.  It’s part of the reason why Thursday Thoughts sometimes entails me sharing the latest article or book I’m contemplating.  In that spirit, I’m reading a history book by Erik Larson, The Splendid and the Vile: A Saga of Churchill, Family and Defiance During the Blitz.  It’s a book about Winston Churchill and the “cast of characters” at the center of Britain’s defiance of Nazi Germany.  

There was a chapter in the book that especially spoke to me, and it was about tea.  Larson wrote, “The one universal balm for the trauma of war was tea.  It was the thing that helped people cope.” (pg. 185)  Larson shared about how much hand-wringing went into the decision to ration tea.  One of Churchill’s advisors (Frederick Lindemann) encouraged him to oppose the rationing of tea to a mere two ounces per week.  Because what would the tea ration do for morale?  “As long as there was tea, there was Britain.” (pg. 186) 

Tea had become a powerful symbol for keeping calm and carrying on in the midst of the war.  The tea ration did go into effect.  It was eventually raised to three ounces per week, and the ration remained in effect until 1952.  People were industrious though, and even began to dry their used tea leaves to steep again.

In the midst of this dense 500 page history book about Winston Churchill, the bombings of London, and some of the Nazi strategies the tea chapter stood out.  Because it’s amazing how the simple things in life can help keep people going, no matter what adversity we may be facing.

A hug or a smile.  
A kind note or a word of thanks. 
A brisk winter walk or curling up with a good book.
A cup of tea, to help carry on. 
Life’s simple joys, thank God.

Pastor Lauren

Photo by Vero Manrique on Unsplash

Thursday Thoughts 1/26/23