It’s all in how you look at things
Tax time is an interesting time for my wife and me. We are both self-employed, so when it comes to knowing our income, it’s a guessing game until we sit down with our tax lady. As it turned out, my wife made more than we realized this last year and so hadn’t paid in enough on our quarterlies. That means we owe a chunk to make up from last year, plus this first quarter’s payment. April 15 is gonna stink this year and it’s right before our 25th anniversary. Happy Anniversary honey! Let’s celebrate at a fast food place
As I think about our situation, I realize that we look at it from a couple of different perspectives. We can look at the downside and the extra money we owe and some of the ramifications that go along with all that, or we can look at the bright side and realize we made more money that we had planned on! When we first digested the news that we owe a bunch of money and that it hurt our daughter’s Pell Grant, we got depressed. It seemed so unfair. Helene almost started crying in the office. She was bummed out. But it then hit me, after taxes I still get about 70% of that extra income. Isn’t that better than no income? Do I let the discouragement of the moment outweigh the joy at having extra money?
It’s about perspective. How do I want to view a situation? How do I want to view life? Sometimes our perspective keeps us from realizing our blessings. We get caught up in the negative aspects of things and forget how wonderful other parts of our life are.
That evening I was talking to a friend of mine in Malawi. If there ever was a group of people who have a right to feel sorry for themselves, it would be the Malawian people. They are one of the poorest nations in the world. Over 50% of the nation doesn’t have running water or electricity; I do. They are worried about where the next meal will come from right now. I wonder about which restaurant I am going to next. They worry about getting sick because they usually don’t have any medicine available in the local hospitals. I whine about how much I have to pay for some of the best medical care in the world. Perspective.
Yes, life can be bad, even here in America. Life can be bad even as a Christian. I am not going to minimize that at all. However, Jesus promised us in Matthew 11:28–30 (NLT) — 28 Then Jesus said, “Come to me, all of you who are weary and carry heavy burdens, and I will give you rest. 29 Take my yoke upon you. Let me teach you, because I am humble and gentle at heart, and you will find rest for your souls. 30 For my yoke is easy to bear, and the burden I give you is light.”
The eternal perspective is God will take care of us. He will give us peace and comfort. No matter what happens here on earth, we will rejoice in Heaven. Hope you keep the right perspective in your life.