Friday, October 26, 2007

Little Miss Ingrate

When I was in junior high, I had a friend who was a middle child. She always complained to her parents that her older sister had all the privileges and that her younger sister got away with everything. Apparently, to her mother, she didn't appreciate anything she had so her mom nicknamed her "Little Miss Ingrate".

Anyone could have called me that yesterday.

I told God I didn't appreciate the gift He had given me that day. I told him it wasn't good enough for me. Actually, I told Him I HATED it! Can you imagine? God hands you a gift, beautifully wrapped with a bright, sunny-yellow bow tied around it. You open it up to find that it's not exactly the gift you had hoped for, so you stick out your lip, stomp your foot on the ground, whine, "It's nooooot whaaaaaat I waaaaaanted" and smash it to the ground at His feet.

Who would do that? Seriously? Well, ME, apparently.

What was the gift God gave me? The day. A brand new, never-been-used-before day. A clean slate. A fresh start. A Mulligan, if you will. A whole 24 hrs to do with whatever I chose. I chose to fill it up with impatience, irritation, frustration and general pissy-ness. At the height of it, when 2 or 3 things went all wrong (read: not my way) at once, I blew up and shouted, "GOD, I HATE THIS DAY"!

Yep. Yesterday was not one of my best days. Not one of my worst, but still.

"This is the day the LORD has made; let us rejoice and be glad in it." Psalm 118:24

I see this everywhere. On keychains, pillows, plaques, picture frames, greeting cards, bumper stickers - you get the picture. I see it so often, that I no longer actually read it. I start to, but then I think, "Oh yeah. I know that one" and then move on. But do I really know it? Do I know it in my heart?

Not really. I don't start each morning thanking God for the day. And, why not? I always thank someone whenever they give me something. Especially, something they didn't have to give me. And God certainly doesn't have to give me a new day if He doesn't want to. Just check the obituary section of the daily newspaper. He doesn't give one to everyone, you know!

So, this is something I really need to work on. I can't tell you how many times I've described my day as "crappy", "frustrating", "not worth a hill of beans" or "can't wait for it to be over". I wonder if it breaks God's heart a little everytime I say that. I know I've given gifts that were ill received. It hurts to know that your time, effort and thoughtfulness go unappreciated. But I'm not just unappreciative of God's thoughtfulness, I actually insult it with my derogatory remarks towards His gift of a new day. That needs to stop. Really.

Chances look pretty good for me that God will wrap up another day, tie it with a sunny-yellow bow and set it outside my door and wait for me to open it first thing in the morning. He's pretty faithful like that. In our relationship, it seems, He's always the giver and I'm always the receiver. Well, tomorrow, that is going to change a bit. I'M going to give! Give thanks, that is. Each day is a gift, but the funny thing about this gift is, even though He gives it, I get to fill it with whatever I want.

I hope I can remember to fill it with much rejoicing. If not, God will remind me somehow. He's pretty faithful like that, too.


1 comment:

Laurel said...

Just yesterday I was just listening to a Dennis Prager podcast about gratitude. He was interviewing the author of a book titled "The Science of Gratitude," which is all about how gratitude lifts of physically and emotionally. Sounded really interesting. But it got me thinking that I need to be more aware of my blessings. Prayer of course helps with that, but I feel like I often rush through that a bit and should contimplate the gifts He gives more. It's so much easier to find out what is missing and take all the we have for granted.

I really liked this post. Thanks.