Monday, May 19, 2008

The Hallmark channel.

For someone who doesn't mind to complain (hey, at least I admit it!), I totally hate to hear someone else get their whine on. I mean, it's ok for me to go off on idiot drivers who obviously aren't aware that I called ahead and ordered the roads cleared for me. And it's completely fine when I gripe endlessly about not having a Target nearby, because I'm convinced it's a travesty of ginormous proportions that I have to drive 40 minutes just to get some bullseye lovin'. It's a hardship. Grieve with me.

I'm certainly not digging the ridiculous gas prices we're being forced to pay now. (And yes, Republicans complain about the price of oil, too--we just don't blame each other because it's not our fault. Get over it, people. Move on.) It's only mid-May and I'm truly sick of the presidential election...Obama, Clinton, McCain...names I would love to go a week or more without hearing. Wars are raging, people are homeless and hungry, cancer is still at the top of my most-hated list, people aren't saying NO to drugs (especially where we live--it's an epidemic, and that's not hyberbole, I promise!), and abortion is denying tens of thousands of children their right to life. Oh, and don't even get me started on human sex trafficking, especially when it's concerning children. I can't go there without falling apart. Thank You, Lord, for my girls and their safety.

Yes, these are difficult times in which we are living. But when it comes to most of the things I've listed above, I remain mostly whine-free. I know...amazing, huh? This is me I'm talking about. I guess it's because my complaints are usually related to the unessential things of life. I don't own a pair of Manolo Blahniks...my thighs are fat...how come we can't go to Hawaii...there's no good place to eat around here...why can't Coke be good for me? You know, important stuff. Riiiiiiight.

Maybe you have an awesome set of rose-colored glasses that help blind you to these issues, or at least make them easier to view. And if they're Gucci or Armani, can I borrow please? Just kidding. Perhaps you're a champion worrier, unable to make it through a single day without certain fear that at any moment an appendage will fall off, a plane will plummet from the sky right into your backyard, or Marilyn Manson will show up asking for a cup of sugar & mesmerize you with his freaky eyes. Ohmyhead. Or do you fall somewhere in between these two extremes?

By nature I am not a worrier. God has just made me this way, so all thanks to Him. But when I sit down & really think about all that's wrong in the world, I feel completely overwhelmed. Who doesn't? Be honest now.

This morning my pastor (whom I love--hey, Rusty--are you even reading this? I'm bragging on you, dude!) spoke about meditating upon God's Word. "...whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable--if anything is excellent or praiseworthy--think on these things."--Philippians 4:8. This is one of those verses I can almost quote verbatim, but have never digested well enough to say I've been fed by it. It was one of those "a-ha" moments for me. After returning home for the day and getting into my regular household chore routine (and, ok, waiting for Heather to post yet another chapter in her compelling "Jason" story), I began telling God, "You know, I really do not do this. This thinking on pure, lovely, noble things. Not that You're surprised, as You know my heart, but I really wanna work on this & can't do it without You. Please. Open the eyes of my heart, Lord..."

Without sounding like Pollyanna (and I do love that movie, by the way--Hayley Mills is huge in this house!) I'm going to make an effort to start thinking about what's right with this world. I'd rather "think on these things," because (a) God told me to, (b) it's just easier than complaining...most of the time and (c) there's a whole lot of really good stuff out there. Such as these few:

*sunsets

*fireflies

*ocean tides

*homegrown tomatoes

*the laughter of a child, particularly my own girls', or my niece or nephew's

*mountain peaks

*a couple in their golden years, still holding hands like newlyweds

*the families serving the Lord in foreign lands, because they are obedient & want to tell others about Jesus

*Lost (y'all know I had to throw that one in there!), the greatest TV show on the air today

*Vivaldi's The Four Seasons, and Rachmaninoff's Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini

*the weeds my children present to me as "beautiful flowers"

*soldiers, military personnel, and veterans

*birth mothers who choose adoption

*Summer picnics

*Autumn bonfires

*Winter weenie roasts

*Spring showers

*the sweet facial expressions and noises a newborn makes

*morning coffee

*good health

*family

*friends

*the Georgia Bulldogs (hey, it's my list!)

*blogging!

*and the most important of all, what Paul is really talking about in Phil. 4:8...knowing, serving and loving God. As Scotty's "3rd" grandmother, Esther, would say, "That there's the mainest thing." It surely is.

This week I am making a concerted effort to guard my heart...to allow God to guard my heart. I am going to think on excellent & praiseworthy things, and not bemoan, for the 347th time, the price of gas or groceries. Please hold me accountable, especially when 10 pm rolls around this Thursday and Lost is not airing. But oh, next week's ep is 2 hours long! There now. You see? Already thinking more positively.

Here's your free gift with purchase: Our 19 month old niece, Eliza, with a very excited Poppy and Caroline. (And Vicki--see part of the cornhole game in the background?)

11 comments:

Kelly said...

it is noble and praiseworthy that you put a barrier between the flowers and your words on your blog. hallelujah! good post, and i read the whole thing, even though it was extra long. that means it didn't suck.

Pinky Roth said...

Well stated and what is a cornhole game?

Mom

Kat said...

Wallowing in the whine should be an Olympic event. My first thought after reading: "why can't I write like this; why can't I think of cool things to blog about?!" Did I learn nothing? Going to go now and think about all my blessings :-)

Danyelle said...

i just can't read it. i wanted to read it, but i can't see the words, making it very hard to read it. what am i doing wrong?

Kim said...

Yes, Leigh Anne I love you! But, I can't always think of a wonderful reply! Sometimes you say it all! I also need to be more positive, because I am certainly in a sad state right now!

And I do agree with danyelle, the flowers are overpowering you wise words!

Heather said...

I think in this day and age it's really hard to just fall back into God's arms and trust that milk will ever be affordable again or that Marilyn Manson won't come knockin' at your door. Because even with God in your heart, it might all still fall apart. I think we just trust that when it does, He'll hold our hand through the whole ordeal.

I think it's a good thing to remember what's right and good and keep it sacred in your house. As a fellow mother with little children, I know that a necessity. You're doing great.

OH and I LOVE Lost and I LOVE coffee. I mean, I really love them both alot. I think they're about to move the island and I'm all worried about how the Oceanic Six will get back. They have to get back!! Do you think they're all really dead? So many questions.

Debbie said...

First, I must tell you that you are a brilliantly funny writer. I love it. Second, I love that your heart was receptive to hear something seemingly so small but really was huge in the way we are supposed to live the Christian life. I am by nature not a complainer and cannot stand listening to "the woe is me." It gets old and boring. I wanna barf and not feel sad for those kind of people. So my flaw is telling people to pray... and then mutter to myself, "and, get over it,already". I love that you shared this tidbit of wisdom with us...we can all use the reminder. Because yes, I complained this morning when it cost me over 70 bucks to fill up my tank. Then was convicted by the Lord in a gently reminder, that I have the money to pay for it...whereas many don't.

Trish said...

great post! i am not a worrier or complainer by nature either, but i think that lately i HAVE allowed those habits to slip into my life more.
i memorized that passage as a teenager, but it has been a long time since i have revisited and applied it to my life. it is a great verse.
our pastor has been teaching about the relevance of the Word of God in our lives today. Isn't it amazing that our Bible transcends all of time!

We are blessed!

Kelly said...

this is weird....it was brown on pink earlier today, now back to flower power.

Mrs. Romero said...

I suffer through the flowers to read, cause you are that good. It's only on my laptop though that it doesn't format correctly... weird.

Anyway, your beautiful post had me so inspired. Then you said "cornhole game" and I almost peed myself.

We Yankees use that term for something completely different (I hope!) and now I MUST know what it means in Southern Speak.

Sarah Pomerleau said...

Thanks for the post...an encouragement from one sista' to another! LOVE YOU!!!!!