Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Bestimme deinen einstellung

When Coach Eric Taylor told his wife (excuse his language), "If I do this thing half-a** it doesn't help anyone," I knew exactly where he was coming from. He was working harder than he ever had in his life and doing it with one thing in mind: his family. I also knew how his wife must be feeling: overwhelmed, discouraged, perhaps a bit isolated and really missing her husband.

Yes I have a grip on reality; I know these are fictitious characters.

But Mike and I had a similar conversation a few days ago. I was struck again by how good he is at seeing the bigger picture. And discouraged for getting stuck in the weeds far too often.

I felt empty, but knew I had to give more. But to give more, I had to be filled.

Mike opened the scriptures and we read passage after passage of comforting, empowering words. While the words sounded beautiful and inspiring, I felt like I had already tried to do what they were saying and didn't reap the power they promised. I felt cut off for some reason. Numb. I explained this to Mike, welcomed some tears in the process and was finally calmed by a blessing.

While Michael spoke, I knew my Father in Heaven was aware of my efforts. I knew He was proud of me. I knew He knew that I could do more than I was allowing myself to do. I knew He wanted me to take the time each day to fill myself. I knew He was there to help me.

I started this week renewed. I have felt fueled by my scripture study. I have felt sustained during the daily grind.
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In my high school German class, there was a sign on the door that read, "Bestimme Deinen Einstellung!" I still think about that advice a lot (still!). So much of our happinessand unhappinessis a choice. If it's possible for me to be unhappy living in Italy, studying the language of love, and cooking fresh pasta for my beautiful family, it's possible for anyone to find reason to be down.

But it's also possible for all of us to allow ourselves to be happy, to allow ourselves to be filled, to allow (force?) ourselves to seek out the sunshine despite the gloomy forecast.

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