14 Apr '15
What?  There are Flowers in my ‘Thorn Garden?’ I had an interesting experience this morning that I wanted to share…one [...]

What?  There are Flowers in my ‘Thorn Garden?’

I had an interesting experience this morning that I wanted to share…one that has thrown me on quite the ‘Introspection Railroad.’  I have been gone for 10 days on a family reunion/vacation.  It was awesome…but now, I am forced to get ‘back to reality.’   You’ve been there–(or is it just me?) the kids are all ‘out of wack,’ tired and grumpy….(okay face it, so are you) and the family system is painfully trying to get back into the swing of things…(but failing…)  So amidst piles of laundry, a house that looks like a bomb hit it, and whiny kids, I took a minute to browse my FaceBook Newsfeed (not the brightest idea, but I’ve been out of ‘virtual touch’ with people for over a week–I NEEDED to see what was going on!)  

I have had many people relate their bouts of “FaceBook Depression”-you know, when everyone else seems to have the ‘perfect life, perfect house, perfect husband…’ To be completely honest, have had ‘twinges’ here and there of covetous comparison, but usually can brush it off pretty easily.   For some reason, this morning was different.  (Okay, we know the reason, I was being hit by the ‘perfect storm.’–YES, the pun is intended!) 

So after indulging myself in a little internal emotional temper tantrum, I found myself kneeling in front of my dryer in my laundry room…I was initially kneeing just to transfer the batch of clothes from the washer to the dryer, but the position actually triggered what I needed most, and I found myself closing my eyes and offering a little plea up the Heavens– “Father, help me…help me to see the good.”  

That got me thinking A LOT…I think it is human nature for some reason to focus on the negative aspect of our lives, and even of others—often those we love the most.  (Crazy, isn’t it!)  I remember a great article on Marriage that I read a few years back that was written by a woman who was on the verge of divorcing her husband.  She simply could not see any good in her husband, or their relationship.  But then it was suggested by a ecclesiastical leader, that she try to see just one positive thing about her husband everyday and also give hime one sincere compliment everyday.  She quickly realized that all she ever did was criticize and focus on her husbands faults, she wondered if she even could see any good…you can guess the result…once she started seeing, and then eventually focusing on the good, it changed every thing!– She reported that over time they went from ‘ready to file for divorce’ to having a more loving and wonderful relationship than they had ever had.  (Now, don’t start thinking that I am saying every troubled relationship can be healed through compliments and positive thinking–I’m simply recounting some good advice…BUT I believe that it certainly can help ANY relationship whether it is good or ‘rocky.’)

 I guess the point to my ramblings is, that too often we only see and focus on the ‘thorns’ that throng our “Flower gardens” of life.  Sure, there are a LOT more thorns than flowers when you look at a rose bush…but are not roses considered some of the most beautiful of flowers?  Perhaps my roses are not as big or showy or perfumed as many others, but they still have a beauty all their own… (Translation: maybe my house isn’t as well decorated as Betsy’s, or as clean as Sally’s…and maybe my husband doesn’t give me manicures, or can finish our basement all on his own…maybe my family can’t go on amazing exotic vacations…BUT,  I have a good home to raise my family in that  may be a tad outdated and not perfectly organized, but it is filled with mostly happy memories, and a lot of love.  My husband is kind and compassionate and makes me laugh everyday (in a good way–hahaha.)  And I am grateful for any vacation we can take our crew on, because there have been years that we could not afford to go anywhere…)  

So my resolution, is to start SEEING and then FOCUSING on the GOOD.  I’m not going to be perfect at it, but no one is perfect.  I may have a mountain of laundry to clean and fold, but my family is blessed to have so many clothes to wear….  The GOOD that I see, is probably different from the GOOD that you see, but that doesn’t matter either–the point is to shift the focus.  I know that many of ‘you’ have probably gone through or are going through some pretty hard and challenges, I am not suggesting that this is a ‘cure all,’ but it certainly can help, at least a little…perhaps your ‘good’ for yourself today is that you got out of bed–hurrah for you!…it may take a lot of effort and perhaps a little prayer, but there is always some good to be seen…

Yes, the ‘thorns’ will still be there, but they won’t seem as important or as harmful when we are captivated by the beauty of the tiny rosebuds that are  blooming (too often unnoticed) right in front of our eyes…


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