Sunday, March 1, 2009

52 Blessings—The Ten Commandments

Early yesterday morning Calvin and I headed into Lowe’s to get some parts for the kitchen sink. It’s been leaking for a good couple of years, but no more.

I love our home, even when it has a leaky faucet. Why, I’ve loved every home we’ve ever lived in, including the double wide trailer and the ½ bedroom barn apartment. I’m as content as I can be in our home . . . until I walk into Lowe’s and see the new kitchen sinks, faucets, countertops, vanities, sunflower-sized shower heads, refrigerators with water dispensers, washers and dryers and then, well . . . and then I get the covets. I think of how nice some of those things would be in our home. It takes images of “thou shalt not covet” engraved on stone, the hungry and deprived in Africa and China or the pvc pipe and plywood aisle (I don’t want for much in those two aisles) to rein in my thoughts.

After we leave the store, the wants subside and my content little world returns, but a walk through Lowe’s is a brush with the dark side because

As a rule, man’s a fool.
When it’s hot, he wants it cool.
When it’s cool, he wants it hot,
Always wanting what it’s not.
Never wanting what he’s got.

“Thou shalt not covet,” one of ten stone blessings that gives direction and satisfaction to my life.

16 comments:

Barb said...

"The Covets" is a phrase that is working for me because it makes it sound like a serious condition, which it could be if not reigned in. The PVC aisle is a good (and funny) antidote.

Julie said...

Thanks for the reality check! I try not to covet but sometimes it's almost impossible. I always get "the covets" when going through model homes and then remind myself that no one really lives there and that's why the laundry room is so clean!

Jill said...

I have to keep myself in check quite often when it comes to home stuff since that's such a love for me. I am happy most of the time with what I have, and I know how much worse it can be, but "The Covets" still hit me over the head sometimes and they're always followed by The Guilts.

Christy said...

I love the gems of wisdom and practical advise I find on your blog and website. This poem is one to remember. I see we employ the same methods when trying to avoid coveting. A little perspective is a grand thing!

tina said...

I love your post. I feel like that sometimes. Why can't we just be happy with what we've got? I think I usually am happy with what we've got, but every now and then there's just too much temptation out there that you start thinking of everything that you could have! Our RS lesson related to this and in prepartion for spring were invited to "prune out" all those things we don't need - pride, coveting, greed, envy, etc. It was a good lesson, as was your post. Thanks, Jane!

Marie said...

"I get the covets." So great. Have you read The Twits by Roald Dahl? It sounds like something in there, but much more serious.

Yes, trips to home improvment places are dangerous things.

melanie said...

After the weekend I just spent in Idaho this is a perfect post for me to read. I'll have to tell you about it some time. I had to repeatedly remind myself that I am happy, even with what we have because I was on the verge of a serious case of 'The Covets'.

Becky said...

"The Covets" can come on so quickly can't they?! I love the antidotes you listed. Two of my favorite antidotes (which I use sporadically) are my Wish List and a gratitude journal. When Jeff and I see something we think it would be great to have we just put it on the Wish List (anything goes--Jeff has had a helicopter on his list for the last 10 years). Then, we can forget about it until a bonus comes along, etc. When we have extra money we can check the Wish List, prioritize what is on it, and pick something. It has worked like a charm for our whole married life.

HeatherM said...

"and then I get the covets". Great line. I get those, too, and have never called them anything quite so clever! I am also so blessed by the 10 commandments. Good post, Jane!

Kathy said...

Jane, what a beautiful perspective! Coveting leads to misery! And as Glenn says, "misery is not manditory". I am grateful for the commandments, I know they are blessings in our lives. I love this post, it is so real!!!!

Jenny said...

I actually needed this today. Thanks for the wise words Jane. I have a feeling a will get a big reality check when I go on the trek :)

Elizabeth said...

What words of wisdom, to be at home wherever you live.

Rebecca said...

The Lowe's analogy brought it down to home plate, thanks for the insight, it's going to help me recognize my monsters.

Hannah said...

It was meant to be that I read this today as it has just been one of those days where my eyes feel big from a case of the covets! Normally it isn't so, but this time of year I think of all I want to do in my yard and garden and lament the fact that I can't just swipe a card and make it happen!

michelle said...

Ditto to Barb's comment! I love this post, Jane. So true, so true. I work at wanting what I have, and most of the time it works out pretty well.

Miller Family said...

Well put. I think this happens to all of us. I feel this way when we visit friends in the Seattle area. They have hugely beautiful homes. I am reminded though that their property taxes are way more than ours and we even get an income from our property.

Once we are home, I love it again. Wouldn't change a thing other than maybe add an extra bathroom so I wouldn't have to share one with my 5 and 7 year old boys. Down the road maybe.