Whether you have children or have ever been around a child you have probably experienced their distain for sharing. There could be a toy in the corner of the room with 3’ of dust on it because it never gets played with, yet if another kid shows interest in THAT toy, it becomes the kid’s favorite toy. They move into full on melt down mode at the thought of another kid playing with this precious loved toy, that they forgot was even there. If you have multiple kids and you know that even if you get all of your kids the exact same toy they will, inevitably, want the other kids’ toys.
We have 3 Ipads and 1 itouch in my house. I know that’s crazy talk for most of you. My husband is an executive of technology and it is important to him that our children possess and become experts in all things Apple. We have made sure to equip all electronic devices with the exact same apps, movies, music etc so that we have no problems with sharing. I repeat, all of the devices have the same things on them! However, they will fight; all day long, over each other’s device. It’s the principle of possession. We want what someone else has. Jesus knew that we would be like this, it’s why He told us; in the ten commandment, don’t covet. He knew that even as adults we would struggle with wanting what others have.
As an adult, I have seen the devil have a field day with this. He constantly makes us dissatisfied with our lives. We have too many kids, we don’t have enough kids, our spouse isn’t as good as so-and-so’s, we want a better job, we want a different or better marriage, we aren’t skinny enough, we are too skinny (ha ha ha said no GIRL ever!) we want some else’s relationship with God, etc. Whatever lie he speaks to you, daily, I am here to flip that lie on its head and give us a new perspective.
What if, instead of coveting and wanting what other people have, we started being the possessive ones? (In a good way of course) What if we started looking at our life and realizing that SOMEONE wants what we have? Someone would come to our house and find our: children, possessions, wardrobe, body, relationship with the Lord, marriage, etc, shiny and new and worthy of attention. If we started viewing our lives from that perspective, would we start taking more pride in what we have?
What if we thought about the woman who would give anything to be a mom. Sleep deprivation would be worth it to hold that precious life in her arms. Would we stop complaining when parenting gets hard. Would be spend more time appreciating the lives that have been entrusted to us? Would we spend more time praying and asking God how we can parent our children; so that they fulfill the purpose that He placed them on this earth to fulfill?
What if we knew that there was someone out there that finds our husbands: charming, handsome, interesting, and worthy of spending time with? Would we start appreciating him more? Would we start giving him the attention and respect he is due?
I think that life truly is what we make it. We can choose to build a case for whatever we want the outcome to be. Do we have desires that are unmet in our marriages? At the salon I used to work at, I had a client give me advice that I still remember to this day. I was engaged at the time and she said, “You need to know that when times get hard, the grass is not greener on the other side; it’s the same.” She explained to me that she was married and not happy so she got divorced and remarried a man that was completely different from her ex-husband. Although he was different, he came with a new set of issues. Some of the things she had enjoyed in her previous marriage weren’t there. Although she was happy she realized that there is no perfect person or relationship. Could we find someone else that would fulfill those desires? Yes, we probably could but that person will come with a new set of issues and other problems that will need to be worked through as well. Instead of seeing what areas are not being met, focus on what areas are being met. We need to ask the Lord to show us what is going right in our marriages. I had a very wise friend tell me one time, “If you believe Brett is a good-willed husband, you will see him as a good-willed husband.”
Going back to the toy example, my kids have stopped playing with a toy simply because the batteries were dead. However, they don’t always ask me to replace the batteries. When a kid comes over to our house to play they bring to light that there is an issue with the toy. They bring to my attention the fact that the batteries need to be changed in the toy and once they are replaced that toy is appealing again.
Maybe our: parenting, jobs, friendships, marriages; whatever just need some new batteries. Maybe we have decided it’s not worth the hassle of changing out the batteries and we’ve set them in the corner to collect dust. Can I challenge us to think about what these different areas of our lives were like when we had working batteries? We should not let someone else come over, to our houses, and call attention to areas that we can address now. Change the batteries in the areas that have stopped working. Find a way to connect with your kids again. Change the scenery and find a hobby or interest you both enjoy and watch your child come alive at the fact that you are investing so much into them. Think of all the things that made you fall in love with your spouse. Maybe even recreate some of the special moments from when you first got together. Find something you love about yourself, because confidence is truly sexy. Adopt the principle of possession. Instead of focusing on what others might have that we don’t; focus on what we have that others don’t, and probably want.
I think if we start seeing our lives as covet-worthy, we will start taking more pride in them.