|The wallpaper in our downstairs bathroom. For reals.|
This can be something as ridiculous as when I catch a fresh glimpse of the Formica on my bathroom counter…
Can you believe I have to live in a house with these old, George Jetson-inspired countertops from the 60s?
How about our microwave…
It’s amazing to think I’m actually able to heat anything is this relic. Quasar? I mean, who should have to suffer like this?
It’s funny but these (and many more!) parts of our home that date back to when it was first built have become kind of like memorial stones to me. Because they remind me of what’s really important, of what’s not and that it’s actually good for me to be humbled by them just a bit.
Yet, just when I think I am pretty content, along comes a Mother’s Day when none of my family is home.
(I know… I can hear all of you young mothers with little ones protesting: “I would LOVE a day to myself!” Trust me - the day is coming in the not-so-distant future when your nest will be empty and you too will wait hopefully for your chicks to return home for a visit. Remember - perspective.)
I knew going into it that the potential was there to feel all kinds of sorry for myself. So I determined to focus on thankfulness and on a few moms around me whose circumstances were so much harder than my own.
Right after we got home from our vacation, Jeff’s best friend died of a massive heart attack. Fifty-one years old. Fit. Active. Unexpected. He leaves a wife and four kids. A mom who can’t believe her son is gone. A ton of friends and family who are all in shock.
Sunday morning I sat in church with Chris’ mom, holding her hand and trying to imagine a Mother’s Day like she was having. Or like the one Chris’ wife was experiencing as she tries to face life raising her adolescent children without her husband.
My family wasn’t with me but I could talk to each of them on the phone. Perspective.
I sent a text to my sweet next-door-neighbor who is a single mom. I wanted her to know I think she’s doing a great job raising two teenaged boys by herself because I know Mother’s Day for her might not consist of flowers and breakfast in bed (that’s just a guess).
I have a husband who has walked with me through some tough parenting years and I honestly can’t imagine how I would have done it without him. Not to mention without God’s wisdom and promises. Perspective.
I had a meal with my sweet mother-in-law who has been a widow for almost twelve years.
Her always-sunny outlook is a constant reminder to me of how gratefulness to God changes our whole countenance. Perspective.
And I know several mothers who are battling disease, infertility, depression and brokenness in their marriages.
Perspective. God’s perspective.
Mine is very small and narrow. God sees the big picture.
Mine is self-absorbed. God’s includes His plans and purposes for many people.
Mine is limited to here and now. God’s encompasses all that’s happened but also what He’s bringing to be that I don’t know anything about.
I have to tell myself this:
Beware of getting caught up in your own little story.
I need God’s perspective. You too?