focusing on what you’ve been given.

Ever so often, I have to get myself back in ‘check’ of my priorities and goals. I get easily side-tracked. My eyes start wandering and I start coveting what others have. I compare myself to others and instead of counting my blessings, I look around to see what I’m missing. And then I become unappreciative of my blessings and all that God has given me. It’s a dangerous road.

Lately, I’ve been getting an itch. My sweet little old house isn’t so sweet to me right now. It suddenly looks small. It’s less than 1000 square feet, so it’s obviously small, but lately, it’s looking really tiny. PB’s toys keep getting bigger and bigger, and the house feels like it is shrinking. And I’m getting irritated with the heating/cooling situation. We have no central air. We use gas logs in the winter/fall and use window A/C units in the spring/summer. I find myself either sweating like a hog or freezing to death. And the kitchen is old. And the bathroom is tiny. And, and, and…………..

I’ve been daydreaming of building a house. Ben and I have been driving all over family land, trying to find the perfect spot to build our house. We think we’ve found a nice spot. We drive out there several times a week and dream. We talk about what it will look like. We talk about the yard, and how we can fit a regulation size football field beside the house. We let PB run around the tall, unkept grass, and we picture watching him play in the yard from our imaginary wrap-around porch.

 And then we get back on the 4-wheeler, and drive back to the little old house. We jump right in to our evening routine. I cook supper in that old kitchen, the one where my sweet granny cooked for years. And then we might eat dinner on the porch, the same porch where neighbors and family have sat and ‘visited’ for years. And then we’ll get PB ready in our tiny bathtub, the same one where we gave him his first ‘real’ bath. And when it’s all said and done, Ben and I will lay our heads in the same spot we did when we were first married.

We have an old, old farmhouse on one of our farms. The house was gutted down to the bare wood. My parents talked about fixing it up one day, but it was really just too far gone structurally to be able to fix it. You can tell the house was well taken care of in its day. The trim and small details in the house tell me someone really took pride in that place. I don’t know who lived there, or who built it. My dad bought the farm several years ago, when the house was all worn down and had been vacant for years. As we were stripping the house, we found that the owners had lined the walls with old newspapers as an added insulation. Some of the newpapers were as old as 1923. When I was younger and we were working on the old house, I would try to imagine the family that lived in the old house. What were they like? What happened to them? Did they live here all of their lives?

Today, we burned that old house down. The wood was rotting and it was beyond repair. I couldn’t help but feel a little sentimental. I have no connections to the house. It’s not a family house that’s been passed down through the years. I don’t even know who lived there. But that was somebody’s house. That house was once filled with the sound of little feet running on the hardwood. And a husband and wife might have started off in that house as newlyweds. And they might have cooked a blue million meals in their tiny kitchen, too.

But now all that’s left is ashes. Old, smoky black ashes where a little old house once stood.

I thought about this today as I was complaining about my own little old house. No matter where we move or where we build, this will always be our first home. It’s where we learned to live together as newlyweds. It’s where I cooked burnt dinners. It’s where we brought our baby boy home. It’s where we first lived together as a family. And no dream house can ever hold the memories that this little old house does.

I’m always looking for the ‘next’ thing. When we were engaged, I couldn’t wait to be married. When we were married, I couldn’t wait to start a family. And now, we’ve got a sweet little old house, but I’m waiting and wishing for a new house.

I’m finding that while I’m waiting and wishing for these things, life is passing me by. The last thing I remember, I was dreaming of a shiny diamond on my finger. Now, I’m a momma and wife of almost 3 years to that handsome boy who gave me that ring.

I can choose to be happy and content with the blessings God has given me. Or, I can choose to ignore all that I have, and focus on the things that I don’t have. I can wait and wish until life completely passes me by. Each day and every moment now is so sweet and so precious. I have a toddler, and though life can be very hectic right now, it is so much fun. Every second I spend coveting what I don’t have is a second that I’ve turned my nose up to the blessed life God has given me.

Do you find yourself ‘waiting for the next big thing’? Have you regretted coveting others’ things because it makes you lose focus on the blessings that you have?

Have a blessed Monday 🙂

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4 thoughts on “focusing on what you’ve been given.

  1. Brit, this made me cry. It was exactly what I needed to hear and I am so appreciative of it. I am at the point right now where I am at the age where I am expected to be married….but I'm not. Jacob is in school and I don't have a real time and it just isn't right. But I am ready…really, really ready. So I have been letting the here and now fly by while I was waiting for what is next. Thank you!

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  2. I've always been a next step person and Jesse and I live by a set of goals for the years to come and it can make enjoying the moment hard, but no matter how beautiful those dreams are I try not to dwell there too long to miss the beauty of today. I love your posts! They always remind me to be grateful which is something everyone needs sometimes.

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  3. I definitely feel this way a lot, and I have to work on it too, constantly. I think a lot of it stems from being a young mom, I constantly compare myself to other moms who have kids around the same age as mine–but usually they are a lot older. I expect to be in the same situation with a dream house, the nice car, the steady job, but I have to remind myself that a lot of them are in their 30's! When you start out young, it feels like a constant game of catch-up, but it shouldn't be about that at all. Grateful for the reminder Britt. You have a beautiful family! 🙂

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