The other day fog surrounded me as I walked. It was peaceful and calm. As I passed a row of trees I was startled at the volume of bird song I heard.
My thoughts went back to a little thing I wrote many years ago. I am going to share it with you today.
This is it just as I wrote it.
“I hate you. I can’t wait until I leave home.” My fifteen-year-old daughter glared at me, her black eyes snapping. “You’re not my real mother anyways.”
Thinking of how much red tape we had waded through to adopt her, I wondered why we’d bothered. No matter what we did, she continued to resist our efforts to parent her. Anger and frustration blazed through me. I had to bite back watched the words rushing to my mouth.
After she left for school, I shuffled out to the patio to have another cup of coffee. The sky was luminous and very blue, while the grass beyond the patio displayed the gentle green of early spring. The soft breeze and warm sun caressed my skin. But my heart was not receptive to the wonders around me. I ached from her words and I seethed as I recalled each rebellious thing she’d done over the last few weeks. She argued at every request. She told us how much she hated us. She said that the day she would leave couldn’t come soon enough to suit her. I felt like she was destroying me and my home.
Within me was turmoil; without, harassment.
Feeling sorry for myself, I sat there and defended my thoughts. Why shouldn’t I feel this way? After all…
As I nursed my ill feelings, I heard a bird sing. Brilliant orange flashed on a nearby bare branch. Beneath, the ground was sloppy brown mud. Patches of grey snow clung to the bushes. Three cats eyed the bird with evil interest. But ignoring the entire scene, the oriole lifted his head and sang.
As I watched and listened, his song strummed the chords of my heart. How cheerful he was in spite of the ugly conditions of the winter-scarred garden. Without concern for his circumstances, he gave his attention solely to singing.
His example challenged me. I, too, could choose to look above my situation to the beauty God had provided—the sun, the sky and the bird—and bask in the warmth of His unfailing love.
I couldn’t choose my circumstances, but I could choose my attitude.
I hope you enjoyed a glimpse into my past.