My wife is famous for her “mom-isms”. You know, those trite little sayings moms use to get their point across in a way that the crumb-crunchers will understand. Though not usually filled with deep eschatological or existential meaning, they do get right to the point.
One that she often used when, in their younger days, my boys were whining about there not being enough cookies or toys or video game time, is quoted prominently in the title of this entry.
Beautiful in its simplicity and sheer genius in it directness, it is a shame that it is wasted on children. Many of us beyond our elementary school years could benefit from its wit and wisdom. As I get older, I’m learning to abide by its intrinsic “just suck it up” sensibility.
While a religio-political prisoner, the Apostle Paul expressed a newfound respect for not pitching fits when handed your lot, in his letter to the early Christians in Philippi:
I’m glad in God, far happier than you would ever guess—happy that you’re again showing such strong concern for me. Not that you ever quit praying and thinking about me. You just had no chance to show it. Actually, I don’t have a sense of needing anything personally. I’ve learned by now to be quite content whatever my circumstances. I’m just as happy with little as with much, with much as with little. I’ve found the recipe for being happy whether full or hungry, hands full or hands empty. Whatever I have, wherever I am, I can make it through anything in the One who makes me who I am. Philippians 4:10-13 The Message
Imagine that! Imagine daring to be content right where you are; whether first-string or bench-mob; prime rib and baked potatoes or weenies and beans; CEO or janitor. What would accepting our current circumstances without pouting or stomping our way into a tantrum do for us? Think about it. No seriously, that wasn’t rhetorical: Really think about it for a minute!
Please don’t tell my wife that her wisdom rivals that of one of the great contributors to western thought and morality: I have a hard enough time winning arguments as it is. The good news is that I’ve mostly accepted that I will usually lose.
And I pout less these days . . .
Pressing on toward the goal . . .