Gratitude and Worthiness

Recently, my mother told me the following story:

I had 5 dresses in middle school. They were all the same, just different colors. But I wasn’t embarrassed. I felt proud to wear them because my oldest sister made them for me. The time she spent making them made me feel special.

This week, a friend of mine told me she’s struggling with one of her children who is constantly dissatisfied with everything, even when she gets what she wants. It’s easy to be annoyed by children because they wear their thoughts and feelings on their sleeves. They don’t hide them as well as some adults. But our hearts are all the same.

Earlier this week, I was selected to interview for a great job. I was surprised to get the opportunity, and spent half a day preparing for it. When the time came, years of music training kicked in, and I went into “performance mode.” I rocked that interview.

I didn’t get the job.

I felt like my friend’s kid. “Why can’t I have it?!?!” It doesn’t matter that I didn’t say it out loud. My heart still felt it, and the people who know me best could tell that I was covertly sulking.

I have an amazing mother, an amazing husband, and amazing friends and family. When my ship capsizes and I’m flailing in the water, they all point me back to gratitude, and to God. They help me right my ship, and for that, I’m grateful. I then took a walk with my son, whose delight in the nature around us, especially the birds, changed my focus.

And the time spent made me feel special.

If you decide for God, living a life of God-worship, it follows that you don’t fuss about what’s on the table at mealtimes or whether the clothes in your closet are in fashion. There is far more to your life than the food you put in your stomach, more to your outer appearance than the clothes you hang on your body. Look at the birds, free and unfettered, not tied down to a job description, careless in the care of God. And you count far more to him than birds.

…What I’m trying to do here is to get you to relax, to not be so preoccupied with getting, so you can respond to God’s giving. People who don’t know God and the way he works fuss over these things, but you know both God and how he works. Steep your life in God-reality, God-initiative, God-provisions. Don’t worry about missing out. You’ll find all your everyday human concerns will be met. – Matthew 6, The Message