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Changing My Outlook

Guest Post by Sarah from Clover Lane

So much of what we read, see and hear today are problems. Things to be solved, discussed and debated. Many of these are trivial things, but it’s hard to not get sucked in by it all. The busy-ness of being a mother and all the duties that it entails sometimes means that days fly by with me never thinking of all the things I take for granted.

I catch myself sometimes complaining about the chore of grocery shopping all the while I’m pushing my cart in a clean store with money in my pocket, throwing food in my cart for my children’s stomachs. What is there to complain about? How can this be one bit of an inconvenience to me? How many mothers in this world would give anything to be able to pick and choose what to feed their family?

I hear myself sighing loudly about the laundry, yet we are warm and clothed and have cozy beds to sleep in! I hear myself looking at my little chores with dread, but I have a house to clean, indoor plumbing and fresh water!

The last couple of years I’ve really tried to make an effort to stop myself when I hear those complaints creeping in, and thinking, “What is the other side of this?”

  • When cleaning the bathroom is on the agenda, I think, “What if I only had a muddy unsanitary river to bathe my babies and children in?”
  • When I’m tired of fixing meal after meal, I ask myself, “What if my children were crying at my feet and I had nothing to fix them?”
  • When I’m exasperated at picking up school shoes strewn across the floor, packing lunches, checking book bags, I ponder, “What if I had to send my child miles and miles away, barefoot, with no lunch, to a tiny dirt floored schoolhouse?”

Instead of complaining, I try to change my outlook to one of happiness and total gratitude for how blessed I am.

Sarah is a mother of five who blogs at Clover Lane. She coined the terms “Vintage Parenting” to describe how she strives to raise her children, using old-fashioned values to bring a different perspective to the pressures we all face today. She strives for the simpler, slower, family-based life.

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  • jeanie says:

    I had this same thought last week! I was scrubbing the toilets and feeling slightly sorry for myself. Thinking “all I do is clean, cook , and clean up after everyone.” I then realized I needed to change my attitude!. How grateful I should be to have a home with toilets to clean, and an able body to do it. I am blessed beyond measure and I need to be reminded daily! Thanks!

    • Janet says:

      Six years ago I was homeless and left with 180K worth of debt no where to live and no job and I had been looking for work for 4 years and living out of a car and things kept getting worse. I finally met someone and managed to declare bankruptcy and eventually finally at 45 ended up with a house for the first time in my life! Then hard times hit again and suddenly we were downsizing with the kids into 480 sq ft apartment. I was selling everything we owned working all kinds of odd jobs etc… Christmas came in 2009 and I was starting to feel sorry for myself. I pulled in my thoughts and went through all of our things and discovered 18 really nice items we could give away for free to others to use as Christmas gifts! We did Christmas very small for our family and it was lovely ! IT was the joy of giving to others that made the massive difference. Last year 2010 we adopted 9 families and also gave another 320 items away free to others (many purchased free or very cheap with coupons) Our Christmas again was extremely small and times in 2011 have been extremely difficult as well. I am humbled in the fact of knowing and already having lived through no matter how bad it gets / things are worse out there
      for others and no matter how hard you have it believe me within even a 30 mile radius there are at least 5 people who have it way worse than you do. Spend zero more time feeling sorry for yourself and work on trying to find those folks and helping them!

  • Natalie says:

    Thank you thank you thank you! This had me in tears because just last night I was grumbling over having to go to the grocery store when all I wanted to do was stay home. It’s tough when you feel like you’re being underappreciated, but really I need to be more appreciative of all I have..and definitely that I am able to shop to keep food in my babies’ bellies 🙂

  • annette says:

    I really love this post, and am glad for the gentle reminder to not take things for granted.
    I just returned from the grocery and was frustrated that my sweet girl wasn’t so sweet. I wasn’t as patient as I should have been with my little sweetheart, who was fast approaching nap time and eager to get to it.
    If I just stay aware of all that I have and grateful of all the joy and love that really is surrounding me, I can be a better mom every day.
    I love Clover Lane and am so happy to have this guest post! Thank you so much!

  • Nikki says:

    WOW! Inspirational Post. Over the last few weeks I’ve caught myself complaining about several things in my life and recently I realized that I need to check myself more. Last week a family, who attends our church, had their house burn down after a lightening strike. At church on Sunday the entire family had smiles on their faces and their positive attitudes were infectious. I realized that I had so much to be thankful for and that I need to think of the positives in my life instead of the problems:)

  • Kerry says:

    Oh I love this– I very often try to look on the bright side as well. In addition I try to do one “good deed” every day. It might be smiling and letting someone go ahead of me in line at the store or it might be making cookies and hot cocoa for my kids and their friends. Something that basically takes no money but is incredibly rewarding…..I especially try to remember to do this when I am having a “bad” day. I am always surprised at how much better my attitude is afterwards.

  • Courtney says:

    This is awesome advice. Such a wonderful, healthy way to think!

  • Amanda says:

    Outlook is very important. When I found myself getting a little frustrated last night when my husband had to stay at work until 6:30, I had to remind myself that many women wait for much longer for their husbands to come home, and some husbands may never make it home at all. How blessed I am that I get to see my husband every day!

    • Chris J. says:

      And that he has a job to come home from! 🙂

    • ann k says:

      So true!
      We both work. My hubs came home last evening at 8:15. His work involves a lot of travelling, so we get to see each other not more than three days a week. But we both are happy that we have a job and can put in that much effort. I have come to the conclusion that Everything in life is an opportuinity and happens for a reason. The more we resist, the harder life is. Acceptance is Bliss 🙂

  • April says:

    Thank you for this timely reminder. I do think that I have ‘pity parties’ for myself way too often. Its easy to get caught up in negatively and I need to stop more often and really evaluate all that God has provided for me and my family. Instead of complaining I need to be thanking God for his many, many blessings.

  • Kelli says:

    Totally agree – I was teaching my son his Awana verse – “Do everything without complaining or arguing”, and I realized I kept getting on my kids for their attitudes and complaints, and yet I would grumble inside about doing chores and work. So about a month ago, I decided to really watch my reactions and declared a no complaining rule for myself. During this month we’ve had taxes to pay, someone ran a red light and totaled our van, we have been dealing with insurance as a result, etc…what a month to not complain! But it has taught me to look on the side of what we do have and what I need to be thankful for – not in a naive, Pollyanna way, but in a thankful, “what can I learn from this” way.

  • toni says:

    Great post. This is exactly what the “frugal fatigue” post earlier may need to hear. Most of us, no matter how dire our situation, probably have it better than much of the world today. Thanks for the insight!!

  • Valerie says:

    Yes, yes. Just last week at our MOPS meeting we had a speaker talking about the country she is working in with orphans and how poverty stricken so many are there and starving. I cannot imagine having nothing to feed my children as they stand crying around my feet. Makes me cry just to think about it. We are so incredibly blessed!

  • Darci says:

    great timing! thank you for this post of inspiration and truth. i have an amazingly blessed life and i need to take time daily to truly be grateful.

  • Jennifer says:

    Thanks so much for this! I was feeling very worn out yesterday. It felt like shoveling snow in a blizzard trying to keep up with all my kids leaving things everywhere. I prayed God would help me be thankful for this season of mothering and homemaking and change my heart. Woke up in the middle of the night to one of my 5 kiddos throwing up. Such a funny answer to prayer as I am so thankful that no one else is sick and my little one is feeling better this morning. I am thankful for what seems (so far) to be an ordinary day in which we are all well or on the mend. There really is so much to be thankful for!

  • Jennifer says:

    Thank you! Just beautiful!

  • AngelaC says:

    *Tears* I needed a reminder today as to all the blessing I truly have. Thank you.

  • Jeannine says:

    Amen and Amen. We need to have an attitude of grattitude. We have been blessed so much in this country because of the sacrifices of our parents and grandparents. Let us learn to pass on spiritual greatness by learning to be thankful!

  • Missy says:

    YES! I’m so glad I’ve been in places where these things I take for granted would be privileges of the wealthy. When I think I need the latest and greatest, it helps me to know that I have all I need. Thank you for the reminder today!

  • Amber says:

    Thank you for this! I need to change my perspective many times. I know that, even when times seem tough for me, there are many people in other parts of the world who would give anything to have what I have…a warm, clean house, a decent car, a healthy son, and a loving husband. I truly am blessed and have nothing to complain about!

  • Koree says:

    I always remind myself that we are rich in that we have Christ when I am feeling sorry for myself that I don’t have gobs of money. When I am feeling bummed that my job is very unstable, I tell myself I have some work and it has been enough for food and rent. It is all a matter of perspective. When I feel bummed I’m not married and starting a family yet….I think I can sleep in on the weekends or watch tv or read whenever I want. Then I can breathe a little easier!

  • Vanessa says:

    I just had one of those experiences this morning when I read about a family from PA who lost 7 children in a house fire. My heart just about stopped when I read that. What a huge wake-up call. I was doing some soul-searching for sure. Who am I to complain when there are so many others who are hurting and in need?

    • Jolene says:

      We live in Pa and my husband goes to the different farmers markets selling windows. Anyway his stand is right across from one of the family’s members stands. He said they’re fine today. I was going to get a basket of stuff together for them. But you’re right, I think you can really learn a lot about joy and taking things in stride just by watching what’s around you.

  • I agree that we should be grateful for what we have but sometimes it just feels good to complain and let it all out.

    • Lana says:

      This is a very dangerous thing to do as someone will always be the victim of the venting. I try very hard not to do that. As a 50 year old wife and mother I can see times in my past when I have been very unkind because I just let it all out and sometimes the damage cannot be repaired. I mean this to be kind advice given in love.

      • Jeannine says:

        Thank you for sharing this kind advice. It is good advice indeed.

      • That’s something I’ve been working on lately too. My husband just pointed out to me the other day that when I let myself get all worked up and then just start venting, that I let small things that aren’t worth it steal my joy. I was a bit grouchy at first with such blunt honesty, but the more I look at myself, the more I see how much energy is wasted in “just venting!” I’m still a long ways from never complaining, but it’s been interesting to at least become more self-aware of where my energy is going, and work towards not letting things steal my joy.

  • Julie C says:

    Agreed it is a matter of perspective! I love to do the grocery shopping these days having increased health and energy after living in a blur for 12 years with health issues; it is a blessing to have the ability to do these tasks for our families.

    A dear women taught her college class of girls to pray their way through ironing their family’s laundry; it was a life changing idea for me and I’ve used it for almost 20 years now. Choose joy!

    • Lana says:

      I heard a dear older lady speak one time and she said that everytime she washes her hair she is reminded to pray for those who have cancer. It is a great habit to get into!

  • Jennifer says:

    I should print a copy of this for my hubby! He has been in a negative funk lately. The other day he was grouching about not being able to find anything in the deep chest freezer because it is so packed. I said, “Be grateful we have a full freezer!” Then this morning I told him to take some chicken for his work lunch that I had cooked last night, and he complained he had taken chicken yesterday for lunch. I told him in a teasing tone, “Oh my goodness, Heaven forbid you take the same thing for lunch two days in a row when there are starving people in the world!”

  • Katy says:

    Great post from a great blogger – I really love Sarah’s blog, it has so many great tips and her cooking blog is also a great resource for my picky family! This post comes at a great time – how true that we should be thankful that we have bathrooms to clean and meals to make. I’ll try to change my thinking 🙂

  • Sarah says:

    Yep, we can all use these reminders! There is a WONDERFUL blog out there I try and read every day, it’s Ann writes very poetically and helps you learn to be grateful for even the smallest of things. She also recommends keeping a gratitude journal so you can truly learn to be grateful. Can’t wait to read her book!!! 🙂

  • Meredith says:

    What a great post!! As today is Ash Wednesday, I’ve been thinking about what treat to give up, but I think showing my appreciation more for my family will be more rewarding for everyone. I often say, “it’s never a dull moment,” but now I’m learning to say when it is a delightfully, blissfully dull moment. Meaning, I’m going to appreciate the good, old regular days with my husband, children, and at my job:) I’m a lucky girl and I need to keep remembering that. Thanks for the reminder!

  • Thank you! Truely inspirational!!

  • Dee says:

    Yeah, I guess it all depends on how you look at it.

  • Great post! It truly is all about perspective. We can either tear down our homes or build it to the glory of God. If we are negative we allow Satan a foothold–we need to be busy building up our homes. I just posted about this today, you can read it here–

    Thanks for the great reminder!

    Many blessings…

  • Julie says:

    Thank you

  • Anna says:

    This is a timely post as well as the other post on frugal fatigue. I was sharing how my oldest child of 4 was a victim of a crime 2 years ago and this event followed right after my ex-spouse left me when I was pregnant. Bad situation, yes but I learned and my family learned how to survive and grow. Right now that life experience is my gauge for how bad it can be when I start feeling sorry for myself. Every day I look at my eldest daughter and am so grateful she is here with me, is healthy, and is able to forgive and move on after the crime happened. It was tough situation but I learned that life can be tougher and harder when we least expect it. How we face our lives is key to being happy. I am happy and grateful to God for the blessings that come our way every day.

  • Jennifer says:

    I feel the same way and every time I start to have a pity party I turn it around. I don’t want to get up and go to work…at least I have a job. My son won’t quit crying…at least he has strong and healthy lungs to make the noise with! I certainly haven’t always been this way but life is so much more enjoyable when you appreciate EVERY little thing! I also feel like it’s infectious and people around you will be happier too!

  • Becky says:

    So true. I often think, as I’m grumbling about my kids’ behavior or thinking about something my husband did that was irritating that the opposite- not having those wonderful, special people in my life would be infinitely worse.

    If we can change our perspective, we might find our days seeming easier and less things “annoying” us.

    This is a great reminder to look at life irritations as God’s blessings.

  • Angie O' says:

    Thank you for writing this. This was a much needed and perfectly timed reminder.

  • Robin says:

    Thank you soooo much for sharing!
    I applaude you for being the change that is so desperatly need in today’s society. Thank you for reminding all of us that we have so much to be thankful for. I speak for myself when I say that often my graditude goes unannounced.
    May you have a blessed week.

  • Juletta says:

    A wonderful message to hear and focus on….though it may not have been our first thought. Thank you

  • Jennifer H says:

    Clover Lane is one of my all-time favorite blogs and I find Sarah to be such an inspiration – the kind of mom I try to be. This post is so timely – I’ve been in a bit of a funk lately about the chores that never seem to end, but truthfully I am so blessed, and I need to remember that more often. Thanks as always, Sarah!

  • Karen says:

    A lovely and timely post…I am resolved to give up complaining for Lent. Keeping this perspective in mind will help with that!

  • BrandyU says:

    A perfect reminder on this rainy day! Instead of complaining about the rain I should appreciate the nourishment my lawn is getting. 🙂

  • Lee says:

    Thanks for this post! I use to live in rural Kenya & saw this on a daily basis. I am a stay at home mom now & I think back on what the stay at home moms in Kenya did on a daily basis (walk 2km for water, cook over a fire, fix holes in their homes). We complain about our kids having colds (and rightfully so) but they complain about deadly snakes, hyenas attacking their children, & malaria. Anyway, thank you for the reminder…it is so easy to forget how much we have.

  • kjs says:

    I was reminded this week that my Bible is always available for reading, whereas so many countries are forbidden to even say the name of the Lord. We are truly blessed indeed.

  • Ashley says:

    I have been thinking about this a lot lately. My father is a preacher and every other year he goes to Ethiopia to preach to the people there (in fact he is headed there this weekend). He comes home and tells us about people who live in grass huts and have very little to eat. He says they are the most happy, giving and thankful people. Some walked 8 hours in their bare feet to come and hear him speak. How often do we complain about driving in our air conditioned cars to drive 30 minutes or less to go to church? The people there have little to eat but share it gladly with those who come from far off. They would each only get a handful of grain or a piece of bread. They view the way we live as Americans as heaven. Thank you for posting this to remind us of our blessings.

  • Jessica says:

    I too appreciate this post. If there’s one thing I’ve learned, it is not to take your children, or your ability to have children, for granted. Yes, children are exhausting and parenting can be very frustrating. We all need to vent sometimes. But, it breaks my heart when I hear people talk flippantly about how “horrible” it would be if they got pregnant right now, or how they’d “freak out” if they found out they were having twins. I used to be one of those peope who took it for granted that I could get pregnant whenever I wanted, have as many children as I wanted, and follow a perfect little family “plan.” Cancer and secondary infertility have taught me to view life much differently. You always think it won’t happen to you, until it does. Cherish your children every day, and be careful about complaining in front of others.

  • Adrianna says:

    I am thankful for the reminder that we are TREMENDOUSLY blessed in this country. Thank you for the reminder that I should be blessed by cleaning toilets, making meals and a husband that has a job to come home from every night (more over, he COMES home every night!) A great reminder to thank the Lord for my blessings today and everyday!

  • Julie M says:

    Great post! I try to do the same thing. I heard an interview with Maya Angelou one time where she talked about being at the end of her rope and wanting to throw in the towel. She was complaining to a friend who handed her a yellow legal pad and told her to write down her blessings. She was so frustrated she couldn’t think of any. He told her he would help her get started… starting with the fact that she can see the pad in front of her therefore blessed with sight. Next she can write down her blessings therefore blessed with literacy. And so on. I try and recall that whenever I am feeling frustrated or overwhelmed.

  • Kristin says:

    Thank you so much for sharing this. What a great reminder of how blessed we really are and of the importance of keeping things in perspective.

  • Kate M says:

    Always a wonderful challenge! We can always choose joy, and to see the blessings He has showered on us, but it is so easy to forget. Thanks for the sweet encouragement.

  • This reminds me of a post that Crystal wrote a little while ago and she ended with a statement that was something like, “Just remember, there are many people who are dying to be in your shoes!” This has really stuck with me and I really try to remember this when I’m feeling unappreciated! and .I really love the song sung by Trace Adkins; “You’re Gonna Miss This”!

  • Teresa says:

    Last night I wrote a similar post on my blog. How my greatest concern is whether my kids have colds or what to get for breakfast when there are women (and men) out there praying for their children to make it one more day or wishing for one more hug.

  • Johnlyn says:

    There is a post written over there that all “I’m just a mom” women need to read:

    Beautiful reminder!

  • Melissa says:

    A great post. A very nice reminder that all of us need from time to time. Thanks!

  • Rhonda says:

    This post was very helpful for me today. I was grumbling about several different tasks this morning and have been trying to implement this way of thinking with each new one that I face. Thank you for reminding me that I should be grateful in all circumstances. 🙂

  • Ashley says:

    Thank you! I needed this today!

  • Jess says:

    🙂 i like this. thank you for reposting.

  • Traci says:

    My husband was arrested for domestic violence 2 weeks ago. Its sometimes hard to be grateful when I feel like the world is heavy on my shoulders. I would really like to crawl into a ball and not leave the house but as bad as things are I still know that I have a roof above my head, beautiful healthy children, an emergency fund and a job that will pay the bills for now. There is always SOMETHING to be grateful for.

    • Crystal says:

      I am so sorry, Traci! I will pray for God to bring you some encouragement today.

    • Lana says:

      I am so sorry Traci. I will pray for your situation. I am glad that you and your children are safe.

      • Traci says:

        Thank you Lana. Prayers are appreciated.

        • Jill says:

          Traci, praying for you! What a difficult situation for your family. I will pray for your husband as well. You must be a very strong woman for being able to stand up for yourself. God has helped provide you the strength. Many prayers to you and your children.

    • Louise says:

      Traci – it is tough to be a victim of domestic violence. However, know that the Lord is on your side and w/Him, nothing is impossible. I’m talking from experience and don’t want to get into details, but believe me, you can get through this – even on your own. You’ll get the children raised and someday they will cherish you like you’d never believe. Just do the right things. It’s not easy – it’s very hard, but it’s possible. The children will help you – every time you look at them, you’ll get energy & sometimes, you won’t even know where the strength & energy are coming from. The Lord will see you through, just keep asking Him for help.

      • Traci says:

        Thank you, these comments are giving me strength. This site is much more than a deal site for me.

        • Darci says:

          Tracy~ You deserve a safe and happy marriage and family. I’m praying for you, your husband, and kids. I am glad you are feeling some strength even in your tough situation. God wants something better for you. You are loved. I’m sending you hugs! Keep hanging on!

  • Julie says:

    Thank you, this was just what I needed to read!

  • Lana says:

    I can always find someone who is having a harder time than me to remind myself that it is okay. A good friend of mine is caring for her husband who was in an accident last fall and is learning to walk again. If ever I want to feel sorry for myself I remember her and how she is homeschooling 2 in high school and doing everything for her husband everyday along with the things I do to run my home.

    Statistically one in four children in my area are going to bed hungry each night. This breaks my heart.

  • Lacey says:

    What a beautiful post! MSM should post this everyday so we can ready it first thing out of bed. I bet it would change how our days went. It is so true. I am thankful to have good, clean food to feed my children. I am thankful we have a nice, clean home that is cool in the summer and warm in the winter. Not only are my children clothed, but they have clothes (new) packed away for the years to come b/c of great deals. I don’t have to make them wear their shoes until their toes are crammed to the end or falling apart because of lack of money. Thank you for allowing us to look inside ourselves. MSM, I see a great challenge coming out of this post.

  • Beka says:

    EXCELLENT little article! Wow, I so needed to hear this!! Thank you SO much for the encouragement!!!

  • Crystal, thanks for sharing this! What a great reminder!

  • Chris says:

    What a great post. I so needed to be reminded of this today!

  • laura says:

    beautiful- thank you!

  • Debbie says:

    Just wanted to say thank you for this wonderful post!

  • Kelly says:

    I was happy to read this post after my husband and I had just gotten home from volunteering all day at the local food pantry. We were talking on the way home how good it felt to be able to do this today and how blessed we are. Really makes you take a look and appreciate everything you have. God Bless everyone and thanks for sharing this post Crystal!

  • Pat says:

    Attitude of Gratitude!

  • Melissa says:

    Thank you for this post.

    This is exactly what I am trying to work on personally right now.

  • Esther says:

    Thanks for this wonderful post. I’ve been reminding myself of it all day as I’ve been busy grocery shopping, cooking, and doing laundry. I complain here and there about everything it seems these days even though things are going very well. I’m in my ninth month of pregnancy, so I get easily exhausted and frustrated at how little I can get done. But I need to remind myself how blessed I am to have a husband who cares for me, a home to look after, and a baby to look forward to. It’s teaching me humility as friends and family have been so kind to us through this time.

  • Becky S. says:

    WOW!!! What an OUTSTANDING article!! Something I really needed to read. I get so discouraged at times being a pastor’s wife. Sometimes all you hear are people’s complaints and it can be very disheartening. Thanks so much! When I think of all the laundry I have to do, instead of grumbling I will give praise to God that my family and I do have clothes to wear and that I have a washing machine and dryer to do most of the work for me.

  • Sehra says:

    Awesome post, this is the same thing I do as well. Many people don’t think about the other side of the coin. Thanks for sharing.

  • Kimberly says:

    Thank you, thank you, THANK YOU for this post!

  • Yvonne says:

    I’m teaching my ‘children’ (guardian of my grandchildren) that what we do is not do chores. LOL, we are “taking care of our stuff”; that’s all–we simply take care 🙂

    • Homestead says:

      Brilliant Yvonne. You just touched on something I’ve been thinking about a lot lately…. the stuff we do because we are members of our family. My kids want to do “chores” to earn extra money and I’m pondering the differences. Your language just helped something click in my head. Thanks!

  • jana says:

    i, too, enjoyed this post tremendously. this is something i’ve been personally working on and it’s inspiring to see so many others working on it as well. i try to take a few minutes every day for my “moment of gratitude” and reflect on all of the things from that day that i am thankful for. it has helped so much in bringing me peace and contentment.

    i do find myself venting at times but my moments of gratitude has helped decrease the amount of time i spend venting, and i’ve found that i’m usually frustrated by silly things now rather than the big things. this is a big change for me!

    thanks for sharing this!

  • Wendi S says:

    I’m going to print these in little snippets to hang above my washing machine, my sink (full of dishes), my fridge, my bathroom, etc. WOW!

  • Dani says:

    I ABSOLUTELY love this post!!!!! I always try to be thankful for what I have!

  • Clare C. says:

    Wonderful post! There is always something to be grateful for…

  • Sarah B says:

    This was an awesome post. Sometimes we forget just how much God has blessed us. It also makes me think of how lucky we are to be able to worship our God freely! I just finished reading Radical by David Platt. A part describes how we drive up to our churches in millions of dollar in vehicles, to a comfortable seat, coffee, the whole nine yards to worship our amazing God freely. On the other side of the world though, there are people who are sneaking a different times to different locations to be able to worship, risking their lives. We are more blessed than we will ever know. I want to always remember to share blessings. : )

  • Amy says:

    So many have said this, but I echo a huge thank you for this reminder. I have dear friends going through deep struggles right now, and it puts my life in perspective. I am so blessed that in this season I have healthy children, a beautiful home, a loving hubby with a secure job. It is a reminder too that we should not become complacent when times are good. A friend reworded the “What would Jesus do?” phrase to “How would Jesus train?” The idea is to think about life as a marathon and that we should train for what is to come. I try to remember that when things are going well. God does not promise good times always; we know hardship will come with our life because the world is a fallen place. Heartache is to come, so now is the time to strengthen my “spiritual muscles” so I am ready to deal with whatever God brings across my path, good or bad.

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