Today a picture flashed in my mind. It was similar to a dream, but I was wide-awake. In the picture I was standing on a hill, one high enough to gain altitude over everything else. I could see two different ways.
Those ways represented different attitudes in my life. Those attitudes produced different results.
In the first view I saw all the places I wanted to go and never went, the “good-paying” job I wanted, and never got, the experiences I used to envision myself having and never having them. When I looked that way I felt bitterness and a corrosive resentment boil up inside.
Then I turned to look at the second view. There I saw all the places I did go to (like Niagara Falls!); all the books and stories I’ve read; all the jobs I had, the relationships and what I learned on the jobs; all the experiences I’ve had, and what I gained from them. As I looked that way I felt rich. I had no reason to feel bitter or resentful.
The lesson from the picture in my mind is plain to me: my feelings depend on what I focus on. I can look one way and see what I didn’t get, or didn’t have, and be angry or in despair; I can look the other way and see what I got, and what I have, and be grateful and hopeful.
What am I focusing on?
What are you focusing on?
2 responses to “What Am I Focusing On?”
Ah, perspective. I need a heavenly version of that this Christmas. The middle age highlight reel of my best and worst moments has been running non-stop as of late. And I’m sad to say that the worst moments from my past effect me more these days than the best. So, thank you for the reminder that what we focus on matters! I’m at a point where I feel like I should have conquered a kingdom or something by now, but have not. Merry Christmas Eve to you, and thank you for your blog ministry. I enjoy reading your content and looking at your pictures. Blessings.
I feel blessed because that picture came to mind in an instant. I didn’t ask for it; didn’t know it was coming; all of a sudden it was there, and it was so clear in my mind. We never know when God will send one of His gifts, do we?
Merry Christmas to you, David, and thank you for the kind words! They are much appreciated!