Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Thankful for the things I haven't got....

I know I haven't posted for awhile.  It hasn't been neglect or forgetfulness.  It's been the fact that I simply haven't had anything to say.  One thing the Lord has been teaching me lately is to only speak when necessary and to measure my words carefully.  So here goes!  :-)

It's no secret that I'm blessed.  My family life growing up was very "all-american".  I grew up in a pastor's family where my parents loved each other and I never feared they would separate.  I had a brother, a dog, played sports, got decent grades, acted and sang, and lived the charmed life.   

Looking at the present, I have the best husband this mid-western girl could ask for, three beautiful little girls, and an extended family that continues to support and love me.  We've NEVER had a fortune - and that's an understatement.  We've ALWAYS made-do with less.  Up until recently I never feared that having less and making-do was a problem - I was used to it.

So, why do I fight that feeling now? 

Lately, as I walk around my home and around my town I notice so many things that I HAVEN'T got.  It's ridiculous!  Almost every step I make around my house reminds me of something that I wish we could either fix, paint, add to or replace to make our home something that is pleasing to the eye at every glance.  After three long years of doing this, it dawned on me this morning that I need to be thankful for the "have nots" and focus on what they represent.  So here goes:

Have nots:

I haven't got a nice kitchen floor.  It's cheap peel and stick wood-grain looking tiles that are broken and chipped.  We have a rug that tries to cover the imperfections.  BUT we have a kitchen floor.  Many people in the world would just love to have a kitchen.

I haven't got enough room to put all my dishes.  BUT we have food to put on those dishes and frankly, dishes to put our food in.  How ridiculous is it that I have 1 set of china from Tommy's grandmother, 2 sets of everyday dishes, 1 set of Pfaltzgraff for casual settings, 1 set of Pfaltzgraff for Christmas and countless pots, pans, rubbermaid containers, plastic cups, glasses, mugs, etc???  We can't even use it all!! 

I haven't got a oven that was created in the last decade.  It's old and ugly. BUT it cooks the food we are so blessed to have.

I haven't got an abundance of pillows for the window seat.  BUT I've got a window to keep the cold air out in the winter and the hot air out in the summer. 

I haven't got a flat screen tv.  BUT we have a TV and for that matter, we have electricity to be able to use the TV along with countless DVDs, video games, videos, and remote controls that most people in third world countries wouldn't even know what to do with. 

I haven't got fresh paint on my walls.  BUT I have walls to keep me sheltered from the wind and rain.

I haven't got very many items of furniture that isn't either a hand me down or new within the last decade.  BUT I have a bed that I sleep in cozy next to my husband, a couch to rest on after a busy day, and a old chair that I love to cuddle in with all three girls and read a good book. 

I haven't got a new van.  Ours is old, dirty, and stained from almost 5 years of handling all that kids can bring - spilled drinks, melted crayons, silly putty, etc.  BUT we have two vehicles that take us where we need to go.  And the van is almost paid off.  And while we're at it, we have enough money to put gas in these vehicles.

I haven't got a nice manicured yard.  Frankly, it's horrible.  BUT we have a tree that Aubrey loves to climb, Grass and pine needles that Gabby loves to make "salads" with and trees to watch grow with time. 

So, thank you Lord for the things that I haven't got....for you use them to remind me all the time of what I HAVE GOT!  Joy in salvation, blessings of a loving family, and a heart that is thankful for the things that really matter in this life.  If the "haven't gots" keep me looking straight to you, then by all means, continue on...

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