365 Grateful: a fine line

365 - 02-20-2015

Sometimes there’s a fine line between complaining and rejoicing, and it all boils down to perspective — how you choose to see the situation or the object. Like this rose, for instance. My parents cultivated roses, and I know for a fact those gorgeous flowers could puncture a thumb if you weren’t careful, and sometimes even when you were. I never heard either one of them complaining about those thorns, though. I always saw their smile of pleasure at the flowers that capped the stems.

My parents were a great model, then, for perspective — for finding what’s worth appreciating, even when there was something sharp that might bear complaint. The difference? My choice. What mom and dad and their lifelong enjoyment of roses taught me is that I can choose to find what’s worth celebrating or focus on what’s negative.

I have to say, I’m feeling awfully grateful for the lesson of my parents’ rose garden. It opened up a lifelong drive to find options, see silver linings, and to dwell on what’s positive, right, and good rather than stumble through what’s negative, wrong, and bad.

After all, if I focus on those sharp little thorns, I reduce the awe-inspiring beauty of the rose. But if I consider the protection those thorns afford to the rosebush, which allows that beauty to blossom and thrive, I can be grateful. Even when they puncture my thumb.

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