Thursday, January 13, 2011

Contentment is always a choice

Looks like I've fallen short on my posts today (it's now late, Thursday evening). 
1. Overslept
2. Overdue article for the Tampa Tribune
3. Interview at 10:00
4. Lunch with my parents in Sarasota
5. Catch up on other important stuff...
Bottom line = Derek simply ran out of time (once in a while I need to attend to work I actually get paid for!).

The good news is I have this very cool photograph from Naomi's facebook update yesterday. That's right, Naomi and Craig's little village of Moodus, Connecticut, had around 30 inches of snow in around 18 hours. I grew up in the UK, so I've had some experience with a mild form of winter, but I'm not sure I could handle 30 inches of the white, cold stuff with as much grace as my daughter. Florida has grown on me over the years, and while I may complain about the heat I'm thinking maybe it's not so bad after all.

And this is the point of today's blog. Someone said the following to me today: "It sure is lucky that Naomi likes the snow so much..." To which I replied, "That's not it. Naomi may or may not like snow that much.... But I can tell you this, Naomi most certainly loves life!"

Born and raised in Florida, my flip-flops daughter - who love, love, loves the beach - is a sunshine girl through and through. Then, almost three years ago, she moved up to Connecticut with her husband, Craig, and they have experienced a succession of the harshest winters in memory. But you know what? I've never heard her complain once.

It reminds me of this quote from Paul's letter to his friends at the church in Philippi: "I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want. I can do all this through him who gives me strength."

There is a choice that each one of us has, every day. We can choose to live, or we can choose to mire ourselves in the alternative. Here's what I think: 
  • Complaining...
  • Whining...
  • Saying we'd be happy if only things were different...
  • Comparing ourselves to others...
  • Feeling sorry for ourselves... these are all a kind of death.
One of the smartest things we ever drilled into our children when they were growing up was the following principle. "The best gift you can give to a town/community/city, is to love it." And that, friends, is 100% choice.

Really... consider the alternative. By the way, if you're wondering, that's Naomi's little Mazda 3 under a few inches of Connecticut snow. Apparently, it snowed a lot more after the picture was taken!

I'm so proud of my children. I'm so thankful that Naomi gets it. She's living like she really means it. 

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