Another Monday is upon me, and I find I am dragging a bit today. It was a fun weekend celebrating my birthday. I am 36, 40 is not that far away--uggh! We went to Indianapolis Saturday and did some shopping, ate some good food, caught just a glimpse of downtown before heading home to Brazil. There is so much there to see and do so we can't wait to go back. I enjoy seeking out the big bargain sales and I found several this weekend. I was amazed at the people who were coming out of the specialty stores with bags over the arms, no doubt they had spent a whole lot more money than I did. One particular store is a favorite among women who desire a great handbag. Rylee and I walked in to browse for fun, and I made the mistake of asking the sales associate if they had a sale going on that day. She smiled politely and told me that they didn't really have sales in this store. I smiled politely back and thanked her as we walked on and looked at a few things that I knew we couldn't afford nor would we buy for the prices I was seeing on the tags. The day left me wondering, "How badly do we as consumers have to have the latest thing?" That could be anything from a specialty handbag, to the latest cell phone, a new game system, techno gadgets, jewelry, sports paraphanalia, etc. I could go on and on, but you get the picture. Once we have something, there is always something new that we have to have so the cycle continues. What if we took that desire, and focused it on something of greater significance? I read today in my quiet time from Matthew 13 about the purpose of Christ's stories. He was asked why he told so many stories when people gathered to hear him. His reply was incredible and thought provoking. Starting in verse 11 Jesus says, "You have been permitted to understand the secrets of the Kingdom of Heaven, but others have not. To those who are open to my teaching, more understanding will be given, and they will have an abundance of knowledge. But to those who are not listening, even what they have will be taken away from them. This is why I tell these stories, because people see what I do, but they don't really see. They hear what I say, but they don't really hear and they don't understand."
I want that abundance! Don't you? It is once again a question of priorities. Yes, it is great to have the things we love, but what does it say about us? For Ryan and I it has never been about having the biggest house, fancy cars, all the latest gadgets and gizmos, giving our children every single thing they could ever want. The struggles we have been through have taught us that we are to remain so thankful, so humbled, so aware of our blessings because anything else is secondary. God blesses us and we should be very thankful for the simplest of things like the air we breathe, our very lives, the time He has given us on this earth. What have we allowed to cloud our focus on that? I don't want to miss what God has to teach me each day, and I know it is a daily battle. As long as the battle rages on, I will embrace first and foremost my time with God.
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