Have you been focusing on the right things lately? Or have you been worried about small and minute things that won’t even matter 10 years from now? Are you embracing the present and grateful for what you have, or are you so caught up in the future or stuck in your past that you can’t even enjoy where you are? Have you been found complaining often lately? Well, maybe your focus is off and you just need to refocus. The truth is that many of us have a tendency to focus on the wrong things. I mean, come on. We get frustrated when our McDonalds fries are cold and not fresh.
We get upset when someone accidentally drives up next to us, rides in a puddle and splashes our vehicle the day after we just washed our car (You feel the pain even now and it’s not even happening).
And God forbid if we should lose our cell phone or it dies before we can make that one “important” phone call or send that one “important” text message….We consider this to be disastrous!
We have completely lost our focus. We have placed so much value on things and people that we have forgotten what it really means to be content and grateful for where we are and what we have. Where we get angry with the cook at McDonalds who gives us cold and chewy fries with not enough salt, there’s someone else out there who would consider it a delicacy to even eat at McDonalds who possibly can’t even afford the dollar menu. Where we get upset when someone else dirties our car other than us, there’s someone out there who considers it a luxury to even have a car that functions. And where we lose our minds when we lose our cell phone or our cell phone dies, there’s someone out there who doesn’t have a cell phone to reach their loved one to connect with them and let them know that they are okay.
Consider the girls in Africa who were abducted. Do you think they have the opportunity to eat McDonalds? As a matter of fact, do you think that they are being fed nutritiously? Do you think they have cars to escape and get away? Do you think that they have cell phones to contact their mother or father to let them know where they are and that they are okay? Let’s take it a step further and consider those who are incarcerated who don’t have access to fast food and are limited on how many “SUPERVISED” phone calls they can make.
So, the next time you or I even think about complaining about anything, let us remember that there are people in this world who would love to be where we are. They’d love to have a roof over their head that has the squeaky floors that you complain about everyday. They’d love to have that car that you complain about just because you want an upgrade. They’d love to have those clothes that you don’t even wear because you’re constantly buying new ones. Oh yeah, and the job that you wish you didn’t have just because you want a different one and want to work somewhere else, they’d love to have that too. And for you married people, that husband or wife of yours that you nag and pick fights with, remember that there’s someone out there who would love to have them and could use their help with the very things that you say they can’t do right. And for you single people who are desiring to get married because you’re lonely, there’s someone in a marriage DYING to be loosed from it because they are unhappy and just as lonely as you, yet they are locked in for life and can’t get out. EMBRACE YOUR SEASON!!!!!!!!
Life on the other side of the fence is not always what it seems to be. With every season comes a burden and a NEW devil with every NEW level. Be grateful. We must learn to be grateful for even the small things. We need to learn how to be content with what we have and where we are. The Apostle Paul put it this way in Philippians 4:11(NIV), “I am not saying this because I am in need, for I have learned to be content whatever the circumstances.” Whatever state we find ourselves in, no matter the circumstances, we must learn to be content.
As you can see, “contentment” is a behavior that must be LEARNED. It doesn’t just happen over night. You don’t just wake up one day and find yourself completely “OK” with everything that’s going on around you. This is a LEARNED behavior. And if it must be learned, it must be put into practice. One cannot learn to do anything if they have not practiced it and made it a habit.
Statistics say that it takes 21 days to consistently make something a habit. Do you think you can do it? Do you think you can go 21 days without complaining about something and thanking God for it instead? Do you think you can begin to find the GOOD in everything instead of consistently searching for the BAD?? Do you think you can learn how to be content? I challenge you to try this. Maybe contentment will become a LEARNED behavior…An inevitable habit in your life if you practice it..Who knows…
So, just relax..God’s got everything under control. As my dad always tells me, “Don’t sweat the small stuff….Chill.”