Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Whatever is Lovely

I've just had one those weeks.  Those weeks when you have so much on your plate and you don't know how you're going to get it all done, but don't see any way of removing anything from the packed schedule.  The school orientation, the soccer practices, and the emotions which spin around the major milestone of my oldest child starting kindergarten.  And after being awoken in the middle of the night and dealing with insomnia afterward, my emotions are definitely running higher than usual.

On such days and weeks, it is so easy to focus on the negative.  My sleep deprived brain wants nothing more than to take little words spoken out of context, get defensive over anything and everything, and say the first thing that pops into my head, no matter how sarcastic or insensitive it sounds.  A loud squeal from my toddler or bickering heard from the other room grates on my nerves to the point where I think I might explode.

Even if we allocate our time wisely, we all go through those times in life when we feel overwhelmed.  Especially when there are school aged children in the house and classes are starting again. Fall is just around the corner.  Gone are the lazy days of summer even though sometimes taking a nap sounds like a little piece of heaven.

When I have days and weeks like this, sometimes even months, it helps me to stop, even just for a few minutes, and reflect on all the beautiful things God has blessed me with.  I have two delightful and healthy boys who all of my family and friends love and adore.  I have a hard working husband who is full of integrity, faith in God, and commitment to his family.  I have a roof over my head and options of what to eat and wear each day.  I have a wonderful and caring church family and a place to grow spiritually.  I have some amazing friends.  And best of all, I can come before my gracious, infinite God in prayer to ask for the strength I lack, which He willingly gives.

It isn't always easy to focus on these things.  Our nature fights against it and we are surrounded by miserable people who want nothing more to make us as unhappy as they are.  But when I focus my mind on the good, when I fill it with God's word and meditate on the beauty and the grace that is present in so many ways, the benefits are more numerous than the clouds in the sky.

"...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 about such things."

Philippians 4:8

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