"I count myself one of the number of those who write as they learn and learn as they write." ~St. Augustine

Tuesday, May 19, 2009


I was just struck today by what a complainer I am. I don't naturally complain much out loud (not that I can't do this too!), but I complain a lot in my heart.

I complain in my heart when the shower doesn't work quite right or when my kids left their towels on the floor "again"! I complain in my heart when I splash bleach on a pair of my favorite pants and when I just don't feel like schooling my kids today... my heart is complaining. I complain when my husband makes plans with a friend that are just a bit inconvenient for me and when my feet hurt from standing on them all day.

It brings to mind the sounds of a whining child who wants "just one more piece of candy", when he just finished a handful a few minutes ago. I look at this child and think "Really?? Are you not thankful for all you just had? Isn't' it enough!" Hmmm....

The problem really is the balance between the reality of life's little (or big) frustrations and a complaining heart.

Where does one end and the other begin? Where is the balance?

It is okay, of course, to be frustrated when I splash the bleach on my pants... but how much frustration, for how long and how many times do I need to notice it and say "dang!". I don't know.

What I do know is that generally I don't live the balance and I so want to. I want to live in and with a thankful heart. When I allow my frustration to overtake the worship or thankfulness, is that the line?

My friend refers often to a fond phrase, "spiritual amnesia". We just forget. We forget who God is, who we are and we forget what is important. We knew it this morning as we sat in His word and then we just forget. This is what I am processing as I ponder my complaining heart.

What would it be like if I so deeply trusted the Lord, so truly worshipped Him alone, and was living in thankfulness? Would the bleach spot have any affect on me?

I painted a black dot on my thumbs today in the attempt to use it as a physical reminder of worship and thankfulness. I wanted to notice it and whisper to the Lord, "I love you!", "I trust you", or "Thank you, Lord". It worked for half the day... and then I forgot. Did I see it and forget or did I just not see it?

I am not advocating law here... there is much, much grace from our faithful, kind Father in this learning curve to be sure! I am just wanting more. I want to live..."Be joyful always; pray continually; give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God's will for you in Christ Jesus." Always, continually and in all circumstances... I want to remember. I want to not live in a state of amnesia.
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