Friday, December 3, 2010
What A Little Princess Taught Me (3)
"It is so little and so high above everything," she said, "that it is almost like a nest in a tree. The slanting ceiling is so funny. See, you can scarcely stand up at this end of the room; and when the morning begins to come I can lie in bed and look right up into the sky through that flat window in the roof. It is like a square patch of light. If the sun is going to shine, little pink clouds float about, and I feel as if I could touch them. And if it rains, the drops patter and patter as if they were saying something nice. Then if there are stars, you can lie and try to count how many go in the patch. It takes such a lot. And just look at that tiny, rusty grate in the corner. If it was polished and there was a fire in it, just think how nice it would be. You see, it's really a beautiful little room."
She was walking round the small place, holding Lottie's hand and making gestures which described all the beauties she was making herself see. She quite made Lottie see them, too. Lottie could always believe in the things Sara made pictures of.
"You see," she said, "there could be a thick, soft blue Indian rug on the floor; and in that corner there could be a soft little sofa, with cushions to curl up on; and just over it could be a shelf full of books so that one could reach them easily; and there could be a fur rug before the fire, and hangings on the wall to cover up the whitewash, and pictures. They would have to be little ones, but they could be beautiful; and there could be a lamp with a deep rose-colored shade; and a table in the middle, with things to have tea with; and a little fat copper kettle singing on the hob; and the bed could be quite different. It could be made soft and covered with a lovely silk coverlet. It could be beautiful. And perhaps we could coax the sparrows until we made such friends with them that they would come and peck at the window and ask to be let in."
"Oh, Sara!" cried Lottie. "I should like to live here!"
Much of what happens to us in this life is not based on what actually happens, but rather, what our reaction to those happenings is. What our perception of those events are is greater, I think, than the events themselves. (this is not talking about abusive situations! I am meaning in general everyday life. Abuse - verbal, mental, emotional, physical, spiritual - is very serious and out of my range of thought here)
Sara was actually a penniless young girl living in a cramped, dingy attic, a veritable slave to anyone and everyone. Yet despite this, she saw the beauty in the small place; she painted it there. Not for herself, but in order to set little Lottie's mind at ease.
People have done me wrong. I have been criticized and had my feelings hurt. I run out of money and worry about paying for things. Every now and again, I feel like no one is there to listen. But despite whatever goes on around me, I can still find a reason to be thankful. Even more than Sara's little room turned lovely with imagination; I have God.
I have God. He wants to paint a tapestry on my wall. He wants to paint a polished grate with a cozy fire softly burning. He wants to paint a comfy bed with a silk coverlet atop. Not to gloss over bad situations, but rather to show that He is able to get me through them.
Scrooge: "What reason have you to be merry? You're poor enough." Nephew: "What right have you to be so dismal? You're rich enough." -A Christmas Carol
Our happiness in life is not based on what wealth we do - or do not! - have. It is very much NOT based on that! Yes, people do allow their circumstances to overcome them... but it doesn't have to be that way! My circumstances are only a part of a dying world... God is far above and beyond this world, and He works outside of its parameters.
I don't have enough money... how can I praise God in this situation? Perhaps He wants me to lean more on Him, to trust Him, and spend time with Him in prayer. I don't know what to do with my time; no inspiration to be creative... how can I praise God in this situation? Perhaps He wants to show me what HE would have me do, He wants me to ask His opinion. I feel left out, like nobody cares... perhaps I can show some love and encouragement to someone else who feels the same way!
We know that in everything God works for the good of those who love him. - Romans 8:28
My life is a painting. I just have to give Him the brush.
(Read further: Part 1 and Part 2)