This week, around day three or so without power and with ants seriously waging war on my kitchen, I was struggling to persevere and be grateful. A friend had very thoughtfully offered to take me grocery shopping since we aren't in possession of our vehicle yet. We actually got talking about she and her husband's life in Sudan before they came here. It was 120 degree heat, usually. Their little kids were often sick whether because of water filtration problems or food contamination. There weren't really any vehicles... So many things sounded so much more challenging than my fridge that was essentially an expensive cooler sitting in my kitchen.
I do realize that sitting next to the guy with his leg cut off doesn't mean having your finger cut off doesn't hurt. It's important to speak truth about what we're going through, and to fully realize God's compassion on our circumstances; I believe that truth helps us to "walk in the light as He is in the light." That morning a Psalm someone had stuck in our suitcases reminded me that David prays, "Give ear, O Lord, to my sighing..."
But a little perspective certainly helps the ol' gratitude factor. Slowly, God is replacing my complaining with thankfulness.