And then there is Kate. She has it together and is always smiling. Pitch something to her and she hits a home run every time! It would seem she is the eternal optimist. Right, the eternal optimist – did you hear the story about the eternal optimist who fell from a 56 story building? At every floor he could be heard cheerfully calling out, “so far, so good!” Kate is brighter than that. She eventually admitted to me that often she is smiling only on the outside, but I give it to her – a good attitude makes a great difference.
A recent article that crossed my path explains how complaining rewires your brain. I can attest, complaining seems to compound the angst and rarely, in and of itself, produces solutions. Reminds me of the year when my husband and I decided to participate in giving up something for Lent. I gave up complaining and he gave up his daily glass of wine – in less than two weeks I started drinking and he started complaining. Precisely at the two-week mark, he landed in the hospital. Coincidence? Probably, but his grandmother who lived to be 100 years old was fond of saying, “I can’t complain.” It served her well. Lesson learned.
So how do we manage to collect straw and maintain brick production? Back in the day when minister’s salaries were meager in comparison to other occupations, my parents always seemed to manage, “make do.” When a resourceful person doesn’t have enough resources, creativity kicks in. Trick-or-treating was a seasonal favorite in the Mid West. Not having the money to spend on costumes, my mother made our outfits. To this day I smile when I remember the cat costume made with an old screen door spring that she fashioned into a cat’s tail. I had a blast swinging that springy tail. Never underestimate the power of resourcefulness.
Even if we can gather straw and make bricks, is this what we want to do until the day we die? It’s not what the Israelites had in mind. The Promise Land - where and what is that for you? A good attitude sans complaining and resourcefulness will help you along the way, but the part about bringing us to our knees – that is where you will find your Promise Land.