Painting by Belynda Wilson Thomas
Every person that you meet knows something that you don’t. H. Jackson Brown Jr
There is always something to be grateful for. My son brought home a summer malady of some sort, which he passed onto me. I have been sleeping in and getting over it. I am still waiting for that morning when I feel like myself again. I am grateful I am getting better, I am grateful it wasn’t worse, I am grateful I will soon be myself again.
What I have is hardly anything at all, just a little inconvenience. Yet, it has altered my morning routine, my gym routine, and my dog walking routine. Perhaps I’m using it as an excuse to not do my morning routine. Any excuse will do when we want an excuse.
Last night as my husband and I drove home from shopping we noticed the sunset was very unusual. The sky was pink, then, blue, then yellow, with what looked like rays spreading out from the setting sun. We delight in nature’s majesty when we glimpse a sunrise, sunset, or a majestic storm. We feel there is a power that orders our life.
We have so many things in our lives we do not agree on. Even areas where we seemed to have a commonality in earlier years we are diverging in our beliefs. We don’t trust that others with diverging beliefs than ours feel just as right and justified in how they see things. They also feel they are doing God’s work if they believe in God, or they are doing something for humanity, or the planet.
If people don’t see things exactly as we see them we seem to feel they have to be wrong. What happened to try to see both sides? This is what I try to do, and it puts me on the outside of everyone it seems. Sometimes it seems trying to see both sides put us on neither side, we seem weak, undecided, pulled in all directions. Seeing both sides gets us dismissed from those who are staunchly polarized.
Never look down on anybody unless you’re helping them up. Jesse Jackson
When we take any idea to the farthest it can go, it often is not what we want. We want the middle way, what makes sense for most of us. We want freedom, but freedom comes with more responsibility. When we live within limits set for us by our society, religion, or family we may feel restricted. When we live by our own rules, we have to set up our own controls. No one gives us a bedtime but we must still get enough sleep to function. No one tells us what we must eat, but if we don’t eat properly we will not be healthy. No one tells us we must exercise, or what relationships we can have, or places we can go or must stay away from. We must determine these things ourselves.
Self-control is the greatest gift we give ourselves. It is the only way to live a good life. We need to control all aspects of our life, thoughts, deeds, those we interact with, what we consume as books, media, news, how we spend our time, what form of occupation we pursue, what we aspire to, our hobbies and interests.
Building a good life is a big responsibility. The more responsibility we accept for the life we’ve built, and the life we want to build the more we are likely to be satisfied at the end of it. We are where we are, we are who we are, and we have talents, gifts, and opportunities. What choices we make daily, determines our life.
Will we live a life of gratitude and forgiveness, or poor me and grudge-holding? Are we getting the chip off our shoulder, or adding to the lumber pile on our back? Would we be described as loving, understanding, empathetic, encouraging, and kind? Are we easy to talk to? Are we a good listener? Do we have good advice but only give it if we know they want it?
Of course, we aren’t perfect, but we can look at our lives and see it going in a positive or a negative direction. Are our relationships getting better? Or are we at a point where we need to learn patience, understanding, and get through a hard time to get through to love at a higher level?
We can’t look at our lives at a low point and compare it to someone else’s at a high point. We are where we are, the lessons we have to learn may be ones that bring us to our knees. We may have thought we had things to teach, but find we have things to learn about our self we have a hard time accepting.
What if we think we are understanding, kind, compassionate, but find others think we are self-involved, judgmental, and inconsiderate? What if we don’t think of our self as disrespectful but someone else does? Is pride the problem, and humility the answer?
We come nearest to the great when we are great in humility. Rabindranath Tagore
Thank you for reading this post? I hope you enjoyed it. I hope you will come back and read some more. Have a blessed day filled with gratitude, joy, humility, and love.
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