The Jamaican Patois dialect is colorful, unique and humorous. It is my desire to share some of the philosophy shown in this mix of colorful phrases that are witty as well as thought-provoking. I hope the readers both profit and enjoy. In my quarter-century of teaching there. I have come to appreciate some things about their culture. Here's an example:
Patois: Every likkle
mek a muckle
English: Every little bit adds up to much
Meaning: If you begin to save small amounts it will lead to big
Clarke says “the ant, is a remarkable creature for foresight,
industry, and economy.” Evidently God also thinks the ant is
pretty smart, for he inspired Solomon to write about the ant. “Go
to the ant, O sluggard, observe her ways and be wise, which,
having no chief, officer or ruler, prepares her food in the
summer and gathers her provision in the harvest. How long will
you lie down, O sluggard? When will you arise from your sleep?
‘A little sleep, a little slumber, a little folding of the
hands to rest’—your poverty will come in like a vagabond and
your need like an armed man” (Proverbs 6:6-11).
comment indicates that ants plan for the future, work hard, and
are careful to save. What a great lesson for the larger
inhabitants of the earth — people. It seems that a welfare
class has been created that expects to live off of the labor of
others. I saw a man interviewed on TV the other day. This was an
able-bodied young man in his 20’s, who enjoys a life of
surfing, drinking, partying, playing music, etc. He expressed no
interest in getting a job to provide for his needs. He gets a
regular government welfare check, borrows from friends, and
makes his bed in different friends’ homes from night to night.
Job 12:7 has a lesson
for us: “But
now ask the beasts, and let them teach you; And the birds of the
heavens, and let them tell you.” They
also make provisions for themselves.
slothfulness is not a new problem, for Paul had to address the
matter in his letter to Thessalonica. “For
even when we were with you, we used to give you this order: if
anyone is not willing to work, then he is not to eat, either.
For we hear that some among you are leading an undisciplined
life, doing no work at all, but acting like busybodies. Now such
persons we command and exhort in the Lord Jesus Christ to work
in quiet fashion and eat their own bread” (2
is honorable, for it is ordained of God, as God told Adam that
he must labor “by the sweat of his face” (Genesis
3:19). There is honor even in a menial job. Others may not honor
a ditch-digger or a ham-burger flipper, but God will give honor.
I know that jobs are sometimes not plentiful, but that’s where
persistence comes in. When I was 18 and out of high school in
the small town of Lufkin, Texas, I went to 33 different places
before finding a job working the night shift in a foundry. It
was hard, dirty work for not much pay. But I had a job! I was
doing honest labor. I was preparing for my future.
back to the Patois saying. You may not make much money, but if
you save even a little bit from every paycheck, it will add up
over time. Saving just $10 a week for five years will amount to
$2,600. That’s a good sum of money that can be used for a
sizeable purchase, and you won’t even have to pay interest
because you have not borrowed the money. My father urged me to
take even a small sum out of every paycheck and put it aside.
That was good advice in 1950, and it is still good advice today.
The savings for some might come from just giving up two cups of
Starbucks coffee a week.
you will do this, you will not only show wisdom in providing for
your own needs, but it will help you to be a blessing to others.
“So then, while we have opportunity, let us do good to all
people, and especially to those who are of the household of the
faith” (Galatians 6:10). Remember: “Every likkle mek a
-- Jefferson David Tant