The other morning, as I was backing out of my driveway, I noticed my sprinklers were on. They’re not supposed to be on at that time of the day. They’re supposed to be on at night. When I’m asleep and they won’t annoy me.
I was irritated.
Obviously, my immediate reaction was one of frustration. Because the power had gone out a few days before, I would now have to reset the stupid sprinkler system, costing me at least three minutes out of my day. AGAIN.
As I was cursing the power going out and contemplating when I’d be able to squeeze in my three minutes to reset the system, this thought smacked me right upside the head out of nowhere . . .
Be thankful you have power.
Uh, wow. That got me thinking . . .
How many times do I run across things in my day – in my life – that seem SO bad or inconvenience me SO much, and yet they’re things I could be thankful for?
Here’s a nice little list of examples I came up with . . .
- Road construction. Detours. Don’t ya love it? And yet, aren’t you glad our roads are taken care of? Or, hey, aren’t you glad we even have cars??
- Gloomy, coastal weather. (My friends will attest this is a sore spot for me.) And yet because of the weather here, I live in one of the most beautiful, sought out places in the world. And I don’t need a snow plow!
- Waiting at the doctor’s office. I get to see a doctor.
Here are a few irritating things my Facebook friends came up with . . .
- Difficult personalities
- Parents once in a while
- Traffic lights, homework, siblings
- Dog hair
- My husband
- My own mistakes
- That not everything in life is fair
- When things don’t go the way I expect or want them to
I wonder what would happen if we actually took the time to think about the flip-side of any of these things, about the good that might be represented behind them – even stuff like dog hair.
What do you tend to meditate most on? The frustrating aspects of a situation or the good that might be associated with it?
If I were to be honest, for me lately I’ve been focusing more on the bad. I had a hard, heavy week last week that was physically, mentally and emotionally taxing. (Thus, the delay in writing this blog.) And when I’m stretched in any of those three areas, I’m much more vulnerable to thinking negatively.
My sweet little sprinkler needing to be reset was a great reminder that not only do I need to regularly “water” my mind with thoughts that are good, noble, pure, excellent, true and praiseworthy (Phil. 4:8) – but . . .
I also need to be proactive in reframing how I look at the events in my life – especially the frustrating stuff.
Are you with me on this one? This week, I’m going to practice taking things that are bugging me and find at least one good thing in them. And believe me, I need to start right now! Maybe you’ll join me too; I’d love to hear about your little frustrations and the good you found behind them.
And by the way, I still haven’t reset the stupid sprinkler system. Maybe in the morning.
(Photo: Copyright (c) 123RF Stock Photos)