Philip Yancey (in his book Prayer: Does it Make Any Difference) tells of moving to Colorado and learning about some poisonous weeds that were spreading in the area and threatening the flowers and plants that were native to the land. He decided to help rid the area of these harmful plants by purchasing a weed puller and walking on the hill behind his home pulling them up one at a time. He used this time alone to pray, but one day his wife joined him on his afternoon excursion and changed the way he prayed and viewed the hillside behind his house. You see, she didn't just look for the damaging weeds, but she also pointed out all the different varieties of wildflowers blooming around them. Mr. Yancey realized that he had been so intent on ridding the hillside of the toxic species that he had totally missed the blooming beauty all around him.
This story made me think that we're all kind of like that sometimes! We get so focused on all the bad things happening, all the frustrations of our life, all the annoying and irritating things that we totally miss seeing the blessings God has given us. Instead of being thankful for all the good things in our lives, we grumble, complain, and fuss about the things we wish were different.
I'm thinking of two friends who have inspired me in this area. One is an elderly widow who has numerous physical difficulties including (but not limited to) being all bent over, reoccurring skin cancer every few months, and being unable to taste; and yet every time I talk to her the conversation is punctuated with "I don't have any reason to complain, God has been good to me." The other friend is currently bearing a heavy load as she cares for her husband with increasing dementia that only get worse with his not understanding quarantine. In every conversation we've ever had, she's careful not to complain -- and her catch-phrase to end Facebook posts is "Forever thankful, always grateful, abundantly blessed." I think God is honored and glorified by their choice to see the wildflowers and not just the weeds, and I know they've both inspired me to be more careful with my words and attitude!
Supplies and tools:
- 100 Days of Grace and Gratitude Devotional Journal (affiliate link)
- These Sweet n Sassy Stamps (affiliate links)
- Project Life Cards (Becky Higgins)
- Canson Mix Media Paper
- Arteza Real Brush Pens
- Clear Glitter
- Jet Black Archival Ink (Ranger)
- These colors of Distress Oxide (Ranger)
- Broken China
- Vintage Photo