Friday, October 3, 2014

NEW {day 3} looking for new in all the wrong places

When my son, Oliver, was 3 years old he would do this thing.  
He would cross his arms and purse his lips and say to me - Fine!  I’m getting a new family!

Guess when he would do that.
 Right after I bought him ice cream?  
Just as I was giving him permission to watch t.v. all day long?
Nah - he only did it right after I disciplined him.  
As soon as he had done something wrong and was faced with the consequences of it, he thought leaving and starting over seemed like the best course of action.

He’s the same kid who periodically tells me we need a new house because we’ve been living in this one too long {3 years} and that he needs new toys because the ones he has are 'old and boring'.  
Yes - we have a gratitude issue.
But even bigger than that, we have a child who is looking for new in all the wrong places...just like his mother.

Sometimes it seems easier to just move on instead of dealing with the consequences of our behaviors or our less-than-perfect conditions.  
We can't find the time or energy to 'make things right'.
We can't imagine that our own hearts could change so we change everything around us instead.
But sooner or later we find that the same problems follow us to all the new places and new people and new experiences that we chase after.  

I don’t know about you but I have a real tendency to quickly gravitate towards the new things I see in the world around me instead of looking inside at the new thing that could possibly spring up there.

This tendency leads me to 
rarely make the same recipe twice 
refuse to watch a movie more than once
load the dishwasher a different way every time
and never run out of ideas.
But it has also led me to make some decisions that are not so inconsequential.

Nearly 15 years ago I lay with my head to the floor sobbing.  The mirrored closet doors on either side of me reflected back a person I could barely stand to look at.  Who had I become?  How did I get to this place?  Would I ever feel clean, whole, new again?

It was the first time I felt that whisper of a word…new.  
Next week I will share some of the pain and progress that came from that season.

In the meantime here's a simple truth I hope you and I can grab onto.
Finding something new outside of us will never fix the problem.
 Allowing something new inside of us will.

And a prompt for all you journal writers.
When I am faced with undesirable circumstances in my life I seek 'newness' by...

NEW is a 31 days series.  You can find the rest of the posts HERE.