Wednesday, December 27, 2006
Making Room For The Good Stuff
"Does a fountain send forth at the same place sweet water and bitter?" James 3:11
Up in my pink dream room last month I finally realized why it had been mind-boggling-hard for me to look on the bright side while living in Nevada back in the 80's. I mean, there I was repeating like a parrot to Naomi, age 8, that she could be happy or sad--the choice was hers. But at the same time, choosing to stay positive, meditating about the good things and viewing Life with a happy spin--all were becoming nearly impossible for me.
I'd wonder, "Why can't I have a good attitude for more than, like, three minutes at a time?"
Not until last month did I truly--like a lightning flash--see that it's not enough to just tell yourself (even over and over) to look on the bright side while you're going through hard times. No, something's gotta give... something's gotta go... because like the verse above says, you can't have sweet water with bitter in the same place.
My problem in Nevada? I wanted to have a good attitude, but I also wanted to stay upset with the people at church... those people on the worship team who, each and every one, wanted me, the sound-mixer person, to make the overall sound the way he/she, individually, liked it (one woman even stepped down off the stage during the greeting time, grabbed my wrist, and told me to turn up her microphone or else...)...
I wanted to enjoy going to church, but I also wanted to stay offended on the Sundays when Tom had to work and then people would look straight at me and ask only, "Where's Tom?," and not, "How are you, Debra?"
... I wanted to be happy we lived in the desert, but I also wanted to keep on complaining about how desolate and dreary all that sand and those soda flats looked whenever we drove outside of town...
... I wanted to take on new, exciting projects, but I refused to let go of one project which God had been finished with long ago... It was like wanting to ride a fresh, rested horse on a new journey, but remaining strapped onto an old, dead horse, instead. On a dead horse you go nowhere.
Well, you get my point.
It's too bad I didn't learn this lesson while I still lived in Nevada. But I'm glad I learned it while living here in New York. Somewhere along the way it became almost easy for me to see Life in all it's best possible angles. But then also somewhere along the way, I had to leave a long, long trail of cast-off junk, stuff like my 'right' to stay angry and offended and disappointed and hurt and bitter. Such a long, long trail of all that lies behind me, but I don't spend much time looking back there.
No, there's way too many better things gleaming up in the road ahead.