Wednesday, January 28, 2015

We All Want What We Ain't Got

It was shaping-up to be one of "those" rides home.  Traffic was even more challenging than ever- there's something about a soft rain that brings out the crazies. Music- that's what this commute needs- a little music!

I didn't last long on the "christian" station.  I didn't think their jokes were nearly as funny as they did.

I turned to the oldies station- and quickly moved-on when I recognized the song as one of my favorites in high school... on the oldies station!

I tried talk radio for a coupe of minutes... I didn't like what they were saying and, more importantly, didn't like how it was being said.

Come on country music- help me out here! I tuned-in just in time to catch Jake Owen's lament:

We all want what we ain't got, out favorite doors are always locked.
On a higher hill with a taller top, we all want what we ain't got.
We ain't happy where we are, there's greener grass in the neighbor's yard.
A bigger house and a faster car, we ain't happy where we are.

Maybe this should be in the hymnal- an ode to contentment!  Contentment, a thoroughly biblical approach to life that we don't hear much about these days.  Owen's song is set in the context of lost love- I guess the hound dog was still in the bed of the pick-up parked under the pine tree.  Too often we find ourselves unhappy with who we are, what we're doing, what we have... and if we're not careful we can lose it all while looking for something "higher," "taller," "greener," "bigger," or "faster."

Contentment begins with gratitude.  We can start by simply giving thanks to "the Giver of every good and perfect gift." A daily dose of gratitude can calm our restless minds, bring peace to our troubled hearts, and contentment to our abundantly blessed souls.

Wednesday, January 7, 2015

Putting Christmas Away

Christmas is an exciting time of the year.  There's something about the transformation of space that makes the season a "whole life" experience.

By now most of us have started packing away the ornaments, wreaths, and collectibles that make it "Christmas" in our homes. Multiple trips up to the attic, down to the basement, or off to the dump have removed any evidence of the holiday.  Soon it will look as if Christmas never happened.

Yet, the message of Christmas is that in Christ, God is "with us."  That is a presence and promise that never goes away.

Maybe we should keep one ornament on a shelf to remind us of the beauty of the season.  Or set aside an angel to remind us of the message of the season. Or, maybe a small manger to remind us that though we have put Christmas away, it is always "with us."