Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Brown Paper Packages Tied Up With String

I was just about to start a post of funny/random web gems and use it as an excuse for a blog post because I've been struggling with some emotions and some thoughts and some things for the past couple of days and I wasn't really sure how to formulate meaningful sentences with all the words that are tumbling around in my head right now.

(And I thought the Apostle Paul was good at run-on sentences. Look at me.)

But then I just started writing and I couldn't stop. My cup overfloweth right now.

Yesterday was a pretty tough day for me. It was tough from the moment I stepped into my office until the minute I left at the end of the day. And it was tough for a number of reasons.

Work stress just kept beating me over the head, I felt horrible and to top it off my past came back to haunt me and you know that's never good.

Over the last year, I've watched someone from my past get everything I ever wanted and it has just gotten under my skin. I don't know why I let it get under my skin because truly that part of my life is over and done with, and has been for a while, but I guess when someone is that big a part of your life, and then it ends abruptly, and not very cordially, things tend to ruffle your feathers.

What I'd been forgetting, though, was that what I see that person getting, is not the life that God has planned out for me. At least not yet. And that if I was getting that life, then I would be miserable because I would be completely outside of God's will.

Then I think about all the great things God has given me since that part of my life has ended. And y'all it's a proverbial bucket-full of some incredible goodness. Amazing friends at work and at church. Once-in-a-lifetime opportunities that I wouldn't have had if I had been tied down to this or that. And most importantly, my growth and maturity in my relationship with Jesus Christ due to some powerful teaching and understanding of God's word. I've learned more about the character of God, His grace and his sovereignty in the last five years than I could have even imagined I could in a lifetime. I hate to think what I would've missed out on if God had not brought me to this town and these people.

Funny story: I got in my car to go to work this morning and thought I'd kick it with some old school John Mayer. So I opened a CD case and pulled out a mixed CD of JM's early tunes and when I put that sucker into the CD player, the first song that played was not John Mayer. It was Julie Andrews singing, "My Favorite Things". I literally laughed out loud. I reached to skip to the next song and caught myself. I stopped and pulled my hand away from the button. Nothing like some Sound of Music to get you going in the morning.

But what's really funny is it got me thinking. Ol' Jules is singing about how she thinks of her favorite things when she's sad or scared or frustrated. And it makes her feel better. I have certain songs or artists that I listen to that make me feel better when I'm down or scared. But I never thought about how thinking about my favorite things could completely change my viewpoint.

So I started thinking. Family. Old friends. New friends. Sweet memories. What God has done in my life. Those are my favorite things. That is what I should be dwelling on. Not the bad, icky stuff that happened in my past that satan tries to throw in my face to steal my joy. I should think about all the good stuff the Lord has given me, the intangible stuff, the non-material stuff. The eternity stuff.

And then I won't feel so bad.

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