“I complained that I had no shoes, then I looked at the man next to me who had no feet.” ~Anonymous.
Stop your complainin’! It doesn’t look good on you anyway. No, this isn’t a rant, just a realization that we all reach a point in our lives when we feel sorry for ourselves, want more, get frustrated with life or lose perspective.
If you are reading this, you are better off than half the world.
- One-fourth of the world’s population — about 1.6 billion people — live without electricity.
- 80% live on less than $10 a day. Nearly half of the world’s population lives on less than $2.50 a day!
- At the turn of the century, nearly a billion people were still unable to read or sign their names.
- UNICEF estimates than nearly 22,000 children die every day due to poverty.
“Be grateful for what you have and stop complaining – it bores everybody else, does you no good, and doesn’t solve any problems.” Zig Ziglar
We live in a society today that believes it is owed, that it is entitled, that it has a right. Yes, Americans certainly have “certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness….”
And, this mindset has trickled down — and up — and risks becoming saturated into a country that now complains about everything.
We have forgotten how to be grateful, thankful and gratified, much less satisfied and fulfilled. The problem is no longer keeping up with the Joneses, but knocking down the Joneses so you can overtake them.
A pastor friend once told me that “blowing out another man’s candle won’t make yours shine any brighter.” And scripture mentions this in 2 Corinthians 10:12: “…but when they measure themselves by themselves and compare themselves with themselves, they are without understanding.”
Life is a matter of being thankful for the little things. But if you’re busy comparing yourself to your neighbor, you’ll lose sight of those little things.
“It is only with gratitude that life becomes rich.” ~ Deitrich Bonheiffer
When you are grateful, your perspective changes. When you are grateful, your world changes. But more importantly, when you are grateful, your view of you changes.
Suddenly, you not only have “enough”, but you also have plenty. Suddenly, you aren’t in want, but you are in abundance. Suddenly, you aren’t sad, but happy. Suddenly, you aren’t living in sadness, but joy.
And then, you realize what so many have realized over the years. That riches, assets and things don’t provide your happiness.
“Through the eyes of gratitude, everything is a miracle.” ~ Mary Davis
Shed the complaining and whining, and learn to appreciate, enjoy and praise.
Some of you are struggling with this article because you struggle with being content with where you are in life and what you have. Mark my words — and this is from experience as much as anything — if you become grateful for the little things in your life, you’ll soon find other things starting to show up on your doorstep. “Things” that God sends your way or “things” that have been there all along, but you just didn’t see.
Still struggling? Okay, take out a pen and paper. Start to write things in your life that you can be grateful about. Start with family and friends. Sure, you may feel like you don’t have as many friends as others or that some family members aren’t especially close to you. But start with what you have. Write down specific names of people who are there for you in tough times.
Your job? Your pet? The garden? The flowers in the front yard?
Review your list every morning, remind yourself of the little things in your life that you are grateful for. Be consumed with those things, be grateful for those things. Ever so suddenly, those seemingly small things will mushroom into big things and multiply in your life.
“Enjoy the little things, for one day you may look back and realize they were the big things.” ~Robert Brault.