Friday, November 2, 2012

Thanksgiving Woes

Fiction Friday
Georgia hated this time of year.  It seemed like everywhere she went someone said, "It's almost Thanksgiving."  Or worse than that was, "We have so much to give thanks for."  Yeah right.  She had already buried two husbands and two children.  She had other living children, but her mind was constantly on the two she had lost.  And as for husbands, she certainly didn't want to hear about that.

Georgia didn't have much to smile about these days.  But then again, she never had.  As far back as she remembered, there was always a weight on her shoulders.  It seemed like no one had as many problems as she had.  She had grown up poor, married young, widowed young, remarried, lost a child, widowed again, and lost another child.

One could honestly describe Georgia as Sad Sack Sybil.  She wasn't a lot of fun to be around and didn't like  the grandchildren taking everyone's attention away from herself.  She was jealous of small children because they required their parents help, leaving them little time for her.  She had difficulty keeping a friend because of her constant complaining.

When Georgia complained, someone always reminded her of her blessings.  She would answer, "Oh yeah.  I've been so blessed."  but secretly resented the reminder. She loved being miserable because it brought her a great deal of attention.  Yet out in public, on the surface she appeared to be quite happy.  She was friendly to strangers and polite to wait staff.

Georgia took very good care of herself.  She ate right and exercised daily.  Most days she walked at least a mile around her neighborhood.  She spoke to neighbors and they all believed her to be sweet and thoughtful of others.  As she made the walk yesterday, she noticed a neighbor's flowerbeds.  On one side of the front door, the flowers were bright, full, and beautiful.  On the other side, they were wilted, scrawny and quickly dying.  That is strange.  They are the same kind of flowers in the same yard.  Why are some so pretty and some so down-right ugly.  Georgia pondered the flower situation as she stood in front of the house. 

She was still standing there when the owner of the house drove into the driveway.  "Good morning."  the neighbor exited the car and greeted Georgia.

"Good morning.  I was just looking at your flowers."  Georgia told the neighbor as she walked closer to the car.

"Thank you.  I enjoy gardening."
"Why are the flowers on one side of the door healthier than the ones on the other side?"
"Because I feed the ones on the right side, but not the ones on the left."
"Why would you do that?"
"Years ago, I had a problem with my attitude.  One day God showed me through a sermon at church that if I kept feeding that attitude it was only going to grow.  If I fed a sweet spirit, it would grow.  So now I plant the same flowers and feed the ones on the right.  When I look at my flowers it reminds me that whatever I feed will grow, both in my yard and my spiritual life.  I am amazed at how much I have grown in Christ since that lesson and I never want to forget it; so I'll keep planting flowers and feeding only half."

Georgia made an excuse about needing to rush home and quickly left.  Her heart was aching and she knew she needed some time alone with God.  How much time had she wasted 'feeding' her pain?

On her knees she promised God that she would 'feed' her blessings in her speech and actions from now on.  She asked Him to give her a visual as He had given the neighbor to remind her to praise rather than complain.  Then she got a journal from her desk and wrote two pages of blessings God had given her. She knew in her heart that she would read these pages often.
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