comparison, agitation, & peace

I spent the entire morning in a state of agitation.

I wasn’t fully aware of it until I noticed how little patience I was evidencing during my daughter’s handwriting practice. time to step awaaay, Christa.

From school, we plunged into some errands, which involved patrolling different sporting goods store in search of an elusive tire to fix my busted jogging stroller only to discover none of the stores had the correct tire and I would need to order it online. Please remember that I was carting my jogging stroller, 1, 3, and 5 year old along with me on this search.

By the time we arrived home from our unprofitable errands {busted jogging stroller still in tow} and I got my boys down for a rest, I was about done. Not done for the day, just done period.

I went to Anna Grace who was reading on the couch. “Mommy’s just going to go pray in my room for a little bit.”
“What are you going to pray about?”
“Oh, I’m just anxious about a lot of things and God says not to worry, but to pray about everything, so…”
“So you’re going to do that and see if it helps?”

Grr. A trick question. From my 5 year old. If I say “yes” does that mean I’m just experimenting with prayer? And if I say “no” does that mean I don’t believe God will help me? I decided to use the old avoiding the question method and tried to explain Philippians 4:6 to her before heading off to my room.

Once I was alone, I tried to think back through my morning. Why was I so agitated?
It hadn’t been anything with school…I was irritated before that.
And although my husband had heisted the ceramic pour over to his office, it certainly hadn’t been that either…seeing I had 2 other ways I could have made coffee.

And then I remembered. That morning, I had seen a few people {whom I don’t even know} share some awesome news via instagram.
A new business venture; an anonymous gift; a popular writing.

And without totally realizing it, I had been comparing. But it didn’t stop at comparison – because when does it ever stop there?
I went from comparing to evaluating:

I could never do that. Why don’t I have that? Dumb. Life is dumb. I am such a failure.

Goodness, no wonder I was agitated.

I confessed my sins of coveting + jealousy + complaining. And then I pulled out my Bible and started reading Colossians 3, a passage that’s been rocking my world for the past month. This verse jumped out at me:

let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts.

I had not experienced or evidenced the peace of Christ at all that day. Instead, I was annoyed and frustrated.

WHAT IF…

…instead of responding with comparison, I had responded with thankfulness?
…instead of being jealous of someone else’s gifts I had thanked God for blessing them?
…instead of coveting, I had thanked God for the hundreds of undeserved blessings He’s given me?

Maybe thankfulness + peace go hand in hand. Maybe that’s why a thankful person is a peaceful person. Because their heart is so full of the peace of God that they’re able to quietly rest in all God has done and just
simply
give
thanks.

I went back to Anna Grace and she climbed into my lap. “I prayed a while. I was worried about a lot of things.”
“Like what?”
“Well…you know how Mommy writes a blog? Well, someone else wrote something that a million bajillion people read and…it just…ya know…sounds like something cool.”
“oh.”
“So basically instead of being thankful for all the amazing gifts God has given me, I decided to think about everything I wanted instead. Not good, huh?”
“no.”

Peace + thankfulness.
Let’s abide in Christ and watch Him produce these fruits in our lives.

5 comments

  1. Bobbie says:

    Thank you for writing from your heart Christa! Your blog is a light in this dark world. I went caving with some friends last week and the last cave was a deep dark hole and we climbed down and it opened up and was really cool. There was a tunnel and I went in with the kids till Miss Bobbie wasn’t going to fit any more. The kids went on and I went back. With a very dim flashlight. I was alone in the cave (with friends at the top and friends in the tunnel) and I could barely see my feet to climb back up. I was tired, then I couldn’t see the opening of the cave anymore. I was about to just sit on the rocks and cry. Then one of the kids (who’s name happens to be Christa) came out of the tunnel with a bright flashlight. It was just one light but oh what a difference it made. Each of us is just one light but we can make such a difference – whether we are reaching 1 person or a million bajillion.

  2. Diana says:

    Thanks for the concrete example of evaluating my day to see what prompted the bad attitudes and then re-aligning with Scripture 🙂 I had similar day to this yesterday, although it wasn’t comparison that prompted my grumpiness. (I’m still not sure what to call my problem–inflexibility? fear? reticence? Hmm….)

    Now if only I could recognize the triggers BEFORE the attitudes surface! 🙂

    And way to go at even ATTEMPTING to go replace the stroller tire with kiddos in tow! 🙂 Hope you get it all put back together soon.

  3. Christa says:

    It’s always a struggle to realign our thoughts with God’s Word, isn’t it? Thinking my own thoughts is a whole lot easier, but also destructive.
    Thanks for the virtual fistbump! 😀 I couldn’t find the tire in store, so I wised up and went through amazon. Per usual. 😉

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