Life is good. Really. God is good, my wife loves me, I like my job so everything.. good. Yep, I am living a charmed life. Life is so GOOOOD.
Then I get a visit from Mr. Bad Attitude that is far worse than a visit by some loved but not liked relative and his/her 4 kids showing up announced to spend the evening with you.. OR MAYBE LONGER. I can even sense a disturbance in the force that Mr. B.A. is heading over tonight after a long day at work which is compounding by rush hour traffic, and.. my faithful sidekick bad back pain is flaring up.
On such days I arrive home seriously tired with a growing headache, then greeted at home by my wife's dog Cooper (a rescue dog) that loves Mary but often barks at me. Mr. B.A. may not be in my house yet, but I can see him looking in my front window sitting in his car.. smiling.
So like I said I am tired.. so I just want to relax for a few moments but the next mistake I make is.. I turn on the news where the top stories are a terrorist attack, hate crimes, and that rogue 'nut job' with a Nuke in North Korea Kim Jong Loonietunes is launching missles again. Congress continues of course playing partisan politics, and there is another 'snowflake' protest in Berkeley by those so afraid of Donald Trump so they burn flags and destroy property (They call it stress relief via anarchy?). All this and OBTW.. everything good or bad in EVERY story is tied to .. DONALD TRUMP. hmm.. I thought only God was omnipresent.
So I turn off the news ready for dinner and notice Mr. Bad Attitude now has his face pressed against my front window pointing to my door to let him in, but for the moment I look away. Dinner is good as always my wife Mary takes good care of me and after dinner we nightly watch Wheel of Fortune. It is our momentary reprieve from this big ol' bad world,... but then from 7pm CST to bedtime there is usually nothing to watch! So I browse the web, and being on Facebook is just a poke the bear experience for me via social media. How many cat pictures and political posts can one man take?
Now it is 7:30pm, my clouded mind has NO silver linings and Mr. Bad Attitude has let himself in and is sitting in my chair eating Cheetos and wiping his orange greasy fingers on my chair while grinning. I am tired, irritated, my dog is growling at me because I spoke to my wife without asking his permission. And I am sorry to say but even a little irritating for me is my wife is peaceful reading a book with no bad attitude. Doesn't she know my back, head, world, and tonight's TV lineup are all sorely hurting? <pause> Well, of course she does because I either mumble/moan about all things bad, or go silent while sulking (loudly). Yes I silently sulk loudly.
Ok, this post is long and rambling.. and a bit pathetic but it is more than somewhat true. Circumstances affect me, I become discouraged, and a bit lost in a bit of rogue introspection where nothing seems good, all while spinning in my mind from this broken day in this broken world to reflecting on my past and present regrets and failures. It is not a pretty sight... but just how Mr. Bad Attitude likes it.
Bad news is.. my back does hurt sometimes badly, and I am not so young anymore so I sometimes am really bushed after work.. and so sulking silently OUT LOUD comes easy.
GOOD NEWS.. we need some good news. Here it is and it is no empty cliche'. There is power in the name of Jesus as I was reminded recently by a friend.
To pray in Jesus name when I hurt, or when I am sad or my introspection gets me in trouble I pray in Jesus name. AND I get practical.. how about turn off the TV instead of spending an evening scrolling through one ba-zillion channels of sameness. Maybe instead I should follow my wife's example (but don't tell her I said so) of reading and praying.. instead of moaning and sulking.
One last note is I know my pain and my circumstances are trivial compared to others, but they are real to me. Your circumstances may be less or far worse than mine, but God does not trivialize you thoughts, emotions, pain, or limitations.. and he cares.
I would like to say Mr. Bad Attitude will not come to visit again, but I know better. But my prayer is not to be so inviting since I really don't like his company.
May God bless each of you with joy and purpose that goes beyond your circumstances. May our attitudes be good and our hearts thankful for a life that can be so good.
The mutterings on life and faith by cartoonist Jeff Larson