Ever have one of “those” days? You know what I mean. The kind where you are just plain out of sorts. I had one of those yesterday. No, strike that. Yesterday was a rough day on steroids. Can I get a do-over?
It started out as most challenging days do, on the wrong side of the metaphorical bed. My husband gave me a cheery “good morning.” I did my best not to respond because I was feeling exhausted and knew better than to say anything. Unfortunately, he didn’t catch my vibe. Why, oh why, does it so often end up that way? We try to hide when we know we’re not good company, but company insists on being there, anyway.
Of course, that meant he doubled down on his greeting. “Aren’t you speaking this morning? Good morning.” Once he’s awake, he’s one of the most chipper people I know in the morning. You know what happened next. That’s right. I snapped at him. Now I don’t even know what I said, but it wasn’t nice. Afterward, I dragged my sorry self into the shower to begin the waking process.
The day tumbled downhill from there.
Now that I’m facing a brand-new day, I don’t feel as overwhelmed. Partly because a lot of the lines on my to-do list got checked off, partly because I got some sleep, and partly because I realize how blessed I am.
The holidays are a rough time for many of us. Life can be hard to keep up with, even when we don’t have extra items added to our daily chores. The holidays pile those to-do’s on with gusto. Cards to write, gifts to buy, parties to attend, family to visit, and company coming over, which means the house needs to shine.
I’m a Christian and yet sometimes I forget my roots. When all the daily push and pull overwhelms me, I know what I need to do—pause, take some deep breaths, and reflect. The Bible says, “Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows.” (James 1:17, NIV) If I take the time to count the many blessings that I have, life gets easier.
I have received so many wonderful gifts. The greatest of which is the true Christmas gift of God’s presence with us. A child born, experiencing the difficulties of life as he grew. Fully man and fully God. He gave the most precious gift of all… His life.
For me today, this gift allows access to One who calms, One who loves without conditions, One who drowns me in blessings every day. I have much to be grateful for. Sitting and counting those blessings reminds me of what is important and what is not. Dogs fed, but the dining room still needs to be dusted. The best part, though, is that I’m happy once more because I know to whom I belong. Imagine how much better my day would have gone if I’d started it by unwrapping the Christmas gift of gratitude before I crawled out of bed. I think I’ll try that out the next time I feel out of sorts. Maybe you can too.
By Angela Shelton
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