I’ve Been Invited… No Wait! I’m the Guest of Honor

There is a scene that plays out at my house several times a week. It’s a scene I have starred in repeatedly over the past almost 24 years. It goes something like this.

Setting: Master Bedroom Closet
Characters: Brad, Me
Me: (alternating between staring pensively at the clothes hanging in the closet and thumbing randomly through the hangers; mumbling to myself) Hmmm. What to wear? What to wear? (Selects articles of clothing and puts them on; immediately goes to stand in front of floor length mirror)

Brad: What are you doing?
Me: Trying to decide what to wear to work tomorrow.
Brad: (Silence.)

Me: (After repeatedly turning to view every possible angle in the mirror) Does this look alright?
Brad: It looks fine.
Me: (Immediately scurrying back to closet to try a different shirt or a different belt or a different pair of shoes or a whole new outfit; then back to the mirror) What about this? How does it look?
Brad: It looks fine.
Me: (With a hint of frustration) Does this look better with these shoes or the ones I had on before?
Brad: They both look good.
Me: (Now with a little attitude) Do you even remember what shoes I had on before?
Brad: Black ones.
Me: (Back to the closet, now with hurt feelings because he’s not paying attention; mumbling to myself) I don’t have a single thing to wear. (Changing outfits again; more mirror time).

Me: Ugh. I don’t like this either. (Changing outfits again. This time not even bothering with the mirror.)

By the time the scene plays out, Brad has gone to bed, I have a stack of clothes to hang back up, and I’m no closer to knowing what I’m going to wear.
And then I get the invitation… to the pity party. And, oh yes! I show up. Of course, I do. I’m the guest of honor. It’s all about me.
Why don’t I have anything cute to wear?
Why are these pants fitting tighter than they did last time I wore them?
How can I have ten pairs of black shoes and still not have a single pair that looks right with this outfit?
How come So-and-So always shows up looking cute, and I just look tired?
And on… and on… and on.
And afterwards, when I’ve completely exhausted myself from planning, hosting, serving as the guest of honor and celebrating my very own little pity party, I get to clean up the mess.
And, it’s ugly. Real ugly. It leaves me empty. And disappointed in myself. And ashamed.
I picture in my mind the precious little girl, Yogita, who I sponsor through Compassion International. I feel quite certain that she doesn’t have multiple outfits to choose from every day or even a closet. I think about the single mom I know who has two children and is always struggling to make ends meet. I’m betting she has tougher problems to solve than what she will wear to work tomorrow. I remember the homeless woman I saw begging on the corner of 11th Street and I-35 in Austin or the long line at the shelter about a block from my office. I’m sure those people would just like to have a job.
I came across an interesting verse this week that really got my attention. Deuteronomy 2:3 reads, “You have circled this mountain long enough; now turn north…” (NASB). God is speaking to Moses and the Israelites after 40 years of wandering in the desert, but He could say the same thing to me.
It’s time for the pity party to end. Permanently.
Continuing on in verse 7 of Deuteronomy 2, God reminds Moses, “The Lord Your God has blessed you… He has watched over you… and you have not lacked anything.”
These verses ring so true! I may not feel cute in the outfit I’m going to wear to work tomorrow, but praise God, I have one! I have a job… and a wonderful family… and my health … and more blessings than I can count. In fact, I have so much that I sometimes forget who is truly responsible for all that I have. It’s certainly not me.
The Lord my God has blessed me.
P.S. I’m throwing a party, and YOU’RE INVITED! Join me in celebrating just how great our God really is! Share the news! Invite everyone! The Lord our God has blessed us . . . wildly!

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