Bright Sonshine

This past week wasn't one of the sunniest—but it sure had plenty of Sonshine.

There were some big struggles within our itsy-bitsy family. They were so big I suppose, because they were very closely tied to our hoped-for future and left deep doubts in our minds. They warred against rationality and unity and applauded perplexity and tears.

Until Wednesday.

On Wendesday, things started looking up for a number of reasons, not the least of which was a very gracious and loving act by some people in our lives. We went to church in the evening, as we do most weeks. There, the pastor, who of course had no idea about the kind of week we'd had, offered hope from the Son, Jesus Christ. And most of the songs we sung were focused on the fact that God is truly God and worthy of worship, no matter if we feel like He is or not because of the woes of our week.

It was there, at church, that I truly felt Sonshine. The pastor explained that if you hold a quarter close enough to your eyes it will literally block the sun's light. But if you hold it back a little, you can see the sun, much more brilliant and beautiful than the quarter. So it is with problems. If you hold them too close, they can block out everything beautiful—including and especially God. However, if you find ways to step back—whether by praying, reciting God's promises, or just taking a walk and getting some fresh air—you'll gain a welcome, fresh perspective that is mostly God and just a tiny bit problem. The issue doesn't disappear, of course. But you see it differently, are less obsessive about it, and realize there is much more to life than this one difficulty, even if it may seem worse than impossible at the time.

Thank God for Sonshine.


So you want to be a housewife...

Yesterday morning, reflecting on certain frustrations at my job of late, I said to my husband, "Maybe I can be a housewife..."

His quick reply: "Uh, uh. You can't be a housewife unless we have kids."

I tried: "But I could keep the house really clean and you wouldn't have to do any of it—you could do whatever you wanted."

"Hmmmm..." he paused.

Amazing how convincing the no-housework-for-you argument can be :-).

When I returned to reality, I thought about the importance of contentment. For the moment, becoming a housewife and escaping 8- to 5-woes seems next to heaven. But if I think on just a teeny, tiny big past the satisfaction of quitting, I can think of lots of problems with becoming a housewife.

Cleaning and cooking—and only cleaning and cooking—everyday would get old probably within a week. And then I'd start looking for a job because I simply cannot stand to be idle and feel useless (not that housewifery—a word?—is necessarily useless), which would promptly propel me out of my week-long homemaking career and into the workforce I had intended to leave behind for good.

Contentment in every area of life—not just in my not-always-delightful job—is so often difficult to come by. When I was single, a pastor told me that when he was single, he wanted to marry. When he married, he wanted kids. When he had kids, he wanted them to be old enough to vacation and play with. The quest for contentment never ends, he said, unless we make the choice to be content right now.

How's that choice made? Daily, I suppose. Every time I've purposed in my heart to be content for the long haul, it's never quite worked for me. Others probably have more discipline, but with just one day ahead of me, the decision for contentment doesn't seem as overwhelming. It's doable.

Now if I could just be a housewife...


So many blessings

In Bible study last night, the leader asked us to close our eyes and think of the blessings that God had given us within the week—and then thank Him for them. She provided a litany of inspiring suggestions, and the goodness of God flooded my mind.

I thought of my husband, my home, my friends, my family, my health. I thanked God for the smell of flowers, the warmth of hugs, the joy of conversation, and the simple pleasure of breathing in fresh air.

I try to thank God for his blessings daily in my prayers. But how often do I truly soak them up and attempt to express a sense of overwhelming gratitude to my Creator—and then realize the wealth of gifts I've received makes that impossible?

To take the time to do that is a blessing in itself.


What blessings do you have? I'd love to read about them in my comments section.
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