I guess I'm feeling a little fiesty tonight, or to put it more blunty, a little BIT*#Y. So I'm going to rant a little.
I don't know about you, but I have a few pet peeves. I'm only going to discuss two of them here, because they're the things I've been thinking about lately.
1) complaining about where you live, as if the city itself is "oppressive", bad, evil, depressing, what have you....
I really get annoyed when people roll their eyes and talk about the town I live in. I hate it when the name of my city rolls off their tongue like poison, as if that just driving through town will somehow seep into their pores and toxify them.
I think that people that use this cop-out are extremely short-sighted, and not very self-aware. A location cannot "depress" you, a city cannot change your mood, an area cannot give you negative thoughts. I think my town gets blamed for a lot of people's unhappiness with themselves and others, and their personal problems.
It's always annoyed me when people do this, the eye rolling and the exaggerated expressions, but lately my intolerance has grown leaps and bounds. Since I've been walking everyday, I realize more and more how beautiful this area is. I'm sure if I lived somewhere else I'd think the same thing. Beauty is always around, sometimes we are just not looking for it.
This is not anyone or anything else's problem if we are blind to this fact, it is our own.
I am amazed at the simplest things that are beautiful. The way the sun hits the water and dances off the underneath of a bridge, the way the weeds form seed pods, the ducks that swim in the sloughs, the leaves turning brilliant red/orange/yellow, the way a country road winds and how the walking path curves into another beautiful adventure.
These things have always been here, I just whizzed right past them. Many things I've been seeing lately I had no idea were around. There are so many wonderful people here, just as there are wonderful people where you live. The sun does shine, the sky is sometimes blue, and every once in a while there is a sunset.
If you are looking for it.
Anyone who drives into this town and immediately gets depressed has brought their own psychological baggage with them in the vehicle and chooses to unzip the bag the minute they hit the first stoplight in town....
2) *I could really get in trouble for this one depending on who reads this...
God will provide...
Sometimes, but not always, this mindset really annoys me. Now let me clarify something. I do think God provides. I'm a person of Faith and believe that God can and does help us.
But sometimes I think people use this term too flippantly and use it as an excuse for laziness and impulsiveness.
This statement can often be a big cop-out.
I believe that God gives us a brain, he wants us to use it. I believe he helps us to find jobs, which pay for the things we need, and to provide things for others who need it. I believe he provides people who love and care for us, and people who we can love and care about. I believe he provides safety, food, clothing and help to meet our needs.
I believe he provides us with a mind that's creative, that can think of wonderful and amazing futures for ourselves. I think He helps us, in all kinds of ways, to see these dreams made possible.
But sometimes, he wants us to help ourselves.
OOOOH, shock and awe. Is this heresy she speaks?
For example, maybe I have an idea, let's say its the upcoming mission trip to thailand that we are going on. I think God's all about this sort of thing. Does that mean that at a moment's notice, without a lot of financial planning, that I/we (my husband and I) think others are going to be moved to fund this trip? Absolutely not! However, does that mean I think that we shouldn't trust God to help us meet the financial demands of going? Heavens no!
I think he wants to work hard, in anticipation of going? To sell assetts that he has helped us acquire, because going is worth something to us. It's not just an investment of our time, but of our money. If someone else pays for us to go, where's the real sacrifice for us? Financial sacrifice is a giving of ourselves, that's just as important of an aspect as is the giving of our time. I think there's a satisfaction that comes, in showing your commitment to a certain group of people, or a cause, in the giving of your PERSONAL time, energy and money.
It sounds harsh, but I think it's laziness to just assume that God has given you a great idea, and that miraculously, poof!* everything you need is going to just plop into your lap by a magic angel/fairy.
This most certainly doesn't mean that I think we can't trust God to help us, it just means that I think God sees absolutely nothing wrong with us also helping ourselves. We're not brainless, we aren't incapable, there's nothing wrong with using these faculties to help work toward a goal that God wants to help us with.
O.k., now i have to end this note on a positive foot, so here's some pictures lately of some of the beautiful things I've been enjoying around town.
Can somebody say AMEN?!