Wednesday, May 26, 2010

On changing perspective

I was thinking last night that I'd like to get back to writing about interesting lighthearted things that people like to read. You know, like back in the good old days, before I had an unemployed husband, a sick dad, a baby on the way, and a to-do list 15 miles long. Back when my only problems were... oh wait. I've always had problems, haven't I? Thinking about it now... 2 years ago we owned two houses, paid two mortgages and two sets of utilities, I worked 50+ hours per week, commuted over an hour a day, barely saw my baby boy, had an unemployed husband, lived 3.5 hours from my family, and had one of the most stressful jobs in the world. (No, seriously. It is on the top 10 most stressful jobs list. Just behind air-traffic controller.) So I guess things are just about the same as they've always been for me.

So when exactly does life get easier? Because it seems like I've always been waiting for that next thing that would make things different. Like in younger years I waited to find my husband. Then I waited for the wedding. Then I waited to graduate from college. (Yes, in that order!!) Then waited for a good job. Then to buy a house. Then have a baby... waited a LONG time for that one! 8 years. Then sell a house. Then move closer to family. Then get out of debt (still working on that). Then for my husband to find a "real" job. Or really just any job - I'm not picky. Then the birth of the new baby. Elijah's birthday. Manny's family to come visit. Then, then, then...

I feel like my sister. Her entire existence is consumed with planing for the next major event... right now it's her senior trip, then graduation, then summer time, then her family reunion, then vacation to the beach, then fall festival, Halloween, thanksgiving, her birthday, Christmas, etc. etc. Don't we all do the same thing in our own way though?

I guess it all comes down to making the choice to be content no matter where you are in life. If you're always waiting for the next best thing you'll never be thankful for where you are now. And truthfully when I try to be thankful for where I am now I find it very hard. Nobody wants to walk a difficult road -- to see a loved one suffer terrible pain, to wonder where the finances will come from to pay the next bill.

So each time I find myself doubting, being anxious, or grieving for myself, I have to purposely redirect my thoughts. I have to "preach" to myself that my ways are not HIS ways. My thoughts are not HIS thoughts. And what I want to happen may not be God's will. In stead I must see that all we have is mercy. Every day we are given is purely mercy. Every trial and blessing are gifts and opportunities to grow. His mercy is new every morning and great is His faithfulness.

I've been meditating on something recently which has really helped my perspective. 3 truths about God that I believe with all my heart yet must daily remind myself of.

- God is ALL powerful and sovereign. He controls everything. Every single thing. He is fully capable of moving mountains and healing every wound, but sometimes He does not. In His infinite wisdom sometimes He allows pain because only He knows the master plan.

- But despite the way things appear in my limited vision I have come to believe that God is good. Always, always, always good. And not just good in a general sense. But good to me. And works good for me. And wants the best in my life.

And though those first two things are plenty. He would never need to add to them, but He has. So not only is He totally in control and totally good, but all that has to become personal.

- Because I know God loves me. All the sovereignty in the universe would be worthless and all the goodness one could imagine would never mean anything unless God loved me. And when you put all 3 of those things together I can rest. And my heart can be at peace because I am His. I know that the all-powerful, perfectly good, God of the universe also loves me. And that means that nothing that ever happens to me is outside the filter of His love for me. The same goes for my family, and anyone else who are His. What a comfort.

Now, if I could only learn change my perspective to walk in that all the time.

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