It’s an election year. Not only nationally but locally for us. Which means someone had the idea to resurface many of the roads here in our small town. The one we live on included. It has been tarred and graveled for two weeks now.
I’m struggling not to complain about it every other breath.
Over the past few years I have worked to retrain my mind not to complain. I fail often. I do not bite my tongue often enough during frustrating moments. It is easy to observe a person who always focuses on the negative and allow our spirit to be dragged down, and I do not want to be that kind of person.
Counting the gifts and replacing those thoughts with gratitude has helped tremendously.
But for some reason the past couple of weeks have been a struggle. I find myself forgetting to quiet my mind and breath out gratitude.
Whatever is True
Finally, brethren, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is of good repute, if there is any excellence and if anything worthy of praise, dwell on these things. (Philippians 4:8 NASB)
Some days dwelling on whatever is true, honorable, right, pure, lovely, of good repute, excellent, and worthy of praise is difficult. Preventing my thoughts from escaping my mouth even harder.
I’m learning that on those days I must fight even though my natural tendency is flight not fight.
A few weeks ago I attended our church’s women’s conference. As you make your way up the drive to the church, young men are standing along the curbs with posters of affirmation. They yell words of affirmation and encouragement. You can’t help but feel loved. One of the signs said “You are warrior princesses!”
I do not usually see myself as a warrior or a princess. Recently, though, that is my desire. Not to be the warrior princess seen in Disney movies slashing sword to and fro. No, a warrior princess in spirit. One who battles the enemy’s attacks on thoughts and mind and intercedes for others when they cannot fight.
For almost two years I have been counting the gifts. Attempting to live eucharisteo, a grateful life. It takes effort to mute the noise coming from all angles and give thanks.
When we retrain our thoughts and minds to focus on the pure, right, excellent, true, and lovely, we are training our spirits to become warriors. When we still our minds to give gratitude we are training our spirits to become warriors. When we replace the negative lies planted in our minds with His truth, we are training our spirits to become warriors.
Even if we fail time and time again, we have to keep fighting. Isn’t that what a warrior princess would do?
How do you battle the temptation to complain? How do you focus your thoughts on whatever is true and lovely and excellent and give thanks?