Purposeful gratefulness

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I am tempted to whine about things this-morning.  I don’t think it matters that most of the whining takes place in my head… it’s still there, right?  So as these things come to mind, I have decided to take a look around and find something to be grateful for in that same area.  Here’s the list:

*Mountains of laundry.  I want to whine about how much dirty laundry my house (and those living in it) produce.  I’d even like to whine about my tiny top-loader that doesn’t do big enough loads for my liking.  Then I look around.  From my house I can *literally* see a handful of women washing their laundry in the dirty stream that runs just outside our property.  They scrub their clothes on a rock, then wring them out by hand, then toss them over near-by bushes and fences to dry.  These same women are all barefoot, as are their children running around near them.  They are probably washing the one change of clothes that they own.  This is what you call a dose of reality.  I’m complaining about having SO many clothes to wash.  In a machine.  When they’re clean, I throw them in a dryer!

*Filthy tile floor.  Look out a different direction from our living room.  I promise you that many of the houses you can see from here have mud floors.  Not tile, not even a dreaded linoleum.  Just dirt.  `Nuff said.

*Loud children.  I have two little girls, who are so enraptured with their current game, they can’t stop squealing and giggling.  Not only do they like each other enough to play together for hours on end, but they are healthy enough to run and jump and laugh for hours on end!

*Dirty refrigerator.  Not only is a refrigerator a commodity in most indian homes, but a full refrigerator??  Unheard of!  My fridge is a mess because of the drinkable yoghurts that have been knocked over by little hands.  Half-emptied coke cans left by visitors have been toppled in an attempt to locate which coke is whose… a serious dilemma, to be sure!  My fridge is cluttered with leftover containers, full of leftovers!  Excess food!  While you may not live in a 3rd World country, I am sure you have seen people who leave the dinner table still hungry, on a regular basis.

*Smudged windows and mirrors.  Glass is my constant annoyance.  I am forever grabbing the Windex and paper towels in an attempt to keep the mirrors and windows clean!  This-morning as I sprayed a window and reached for the towel, I was struck by a terrible thought.  Some day, I won’t have tiny little hand prints all over the windows anymore.  I am quite sure that some day, I will be in tears because I miss those tiny hand-prints, and not because I’ve washed that particular window 3 times already this week.

*Love handles.  I suppose this goes back to the same thing as the refrigerator.  I *could* be starving to death somewhere, then I wouldn’t have to worry about love handles.

*Slow internet.  Really???  Am I seriously wanting to complain about this???  I happen to know of a missionary family who lives SO FAR OUT in the middle of nowhere that they only get the chance to go to town and check e-mail once a month.  And I think I don’t get to talk to my friends and family enough???

*Being sick.  What better way to be reminded of how great it feels to be healthy?

Now I’m going to go back to putting away clean laundry.  Then I’ll sit and read a few books with my rowdy girls.  So much to be grateful for!

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12 responses »

  1. ladies and gents, THIS IS MY WOMAN! right there, that’s her… and i am so proud of her. i am the luckiest guy ever.

    ps. babe, sorry it has been a long week… only 3 more months and you get to go home to CO! (including 6 days of driving EACH way) THAT will be a vacation… just think of it!

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  2. Ahh, Jules. I know you didn’t mean to…or maybe you did… 😉 But I feel so guilty for complaining about being tired after a long days work yesterday, #1 I HAVE a job, #2 I’m mostly tired beacuse God’s given me another precious bundle to carry for 9 months, #3 part of why I’m tired is from taking care of and cleaning another persons house just to go home and have to clean house and do laundry of my own, but Thank the Lord I have laundry and a house and my boys to make my house dirty!! 🙂
    You are a constant encouragement and challenge to me, I love you!! xoxoxo!

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    • NO WAY would I make you feel guilty on purpose!! I am so sorry you’re exhausted. I wish I could do something to help. You are always safe to complain to me… you know that!!! 🙂 xoxoxo

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      • Ohhh I know you would never do it on purpose! 🙂 You are way to sweet for that!!! xoxoxoxoxoxoxoxooxoxoxo!!!

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  3. ugh! You totally made me cry girl! We are SO blessed, and all the annoyances do point to the blessings we have on the opposite side of the annoyance. Thanks for reminding me.

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  4. this is so awesome and a great reminder.
    I have been stressed out of my mind getting ready to go (we are moving out of our house in 10 days!!!!) But I really do need to count my blessings. And now I have because of you.
    You are awesome

    (and definitely one of my blessings I count!)

    Love you!

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  5. Julie!!! I am so happy I just read this post. God has been doing quite a work in me in maintaining a positive attitude and this post just added to that work. Thank you so much 🙂 I’m going to blog about your blog today, be prepared! (I say today, but I’m moving in two days and Casey’s off on an army trip, so by today, I may mean in the near future 🙂

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