Wednesday, June 24, 2009

"LOVE IS..." and Other Things That Matter

"Love Is...
Not Expecting Him To
Keep Up With The Joneses

It's Wednesday and time for another one of my very favorite "Love Is..." posts! I've been MIA a little bit this week! So much going on in my life over the last several days that I just had to take some time off! I've missed you though and I'm glad to be back!

I couldn't have known it back in 1977 when my hubby slipped this charming clipping into one of his love letters to me that one day the very subject would raise it's ugly head...

Let it be said that there are people all around us that do indeed have more "physical" or "tangible" things than we do. When I was a young bride or even a young mother this use to really bother me. It wasn't just because someone had more than we did mind you~ I mean, that did bug me... but not as much as seeing my Mr. AGPMan work so incredibly hard and then not being fully compensated for it. It APPEARED sometimes that those who worked "less" were rewarded by having "more"...

One of my most frequent statements to my overworked, underpaid guy was:

"Why can't we have that?"

The devastated look on my man's face put me into my place on more than one occasion...

Several years ago we were faced with a terrible financial crisis. The result was the near loss of the very home we'd work so hard to purchase. My hubbs and I were truly frightened by what we were facing but determined at the same time to climb back up to the top of greenback mountain...

I made a promise to God during those difficult months of 1996. I asked Him to help us save our home and in return I would never question again why my blessings were what they were. I prayed to gratefully accept His gifts and be thankful for them.

I've kept my promise and I'm content to allow Mr. & Mrs. Jones (or whoever they may be) to run on up ahead...

Blessings to you as you accept all of what God has for you...Rebecca

22 comments:

Eclectic Pink Rose said...

I always look forward to your Wednesday Love is.... posts! Adorable and always love the great stories too. You're a sweetheart and an inspiration!!! Big Hugs ♥ Teresa

Forever Vintage said...

A very nice post Rebecca...I totally agree with you. Hubby and I are not materialistic people. We don't need the fancy house "on the hill" (thats where they're located here) or the best car in the driveway. We feel no need to keep up with Joneses and we try to instill that in our children, and we know how hard that is in todays world!

Shelia said...

Morning, Dear Beautiful Rebecca! What a wonderful post! I have been right where you're talking about! I'll tell you a little story about me - I have been playing the piano since I was 12 years old and had always wanted a grand. Well, I've also been the pianist in almost every church we've been a member of. I had a friend who couldn't play as well as me (not that that matters) but she got a baby grand piano! It upset me so much I cried and cried! I was in my late 20s at the time, married and two children! Instead of being proud for her I was so jealous and thought 'she doesn't deserve that'! How awful I was! After my crying spell the Lord had a little talk with me and told me how selfishly I was acting. It seemed to me, He was telling me my day would come and it would be alright. I truly tried to be thankful for the old piano I had and honey it was old! So old the strings kept breaking and hubby would go inside and tie the broken strings up with crochet thread! It was an old upright with a mirror across the top and the mirror had gotten broken. It was a pitiful sight! lol Time went on and my hubby got a promotion. We moved to another state, bought a house and after the moving trucks had moved in our things and boxes - that very weekend we went grand piano shopping! Yes, I got a grand piano! I cried again and thanked my hubby and my God! I didn't feel worthy, still remembering my little fit I pitched. When I look at my piano every day, I truly consider it 'MY GIFT'.
Be a sweetie,
Shelia :)

Barb~Bella Vista said...

Dear Rebecca, this is sooo good and thought provoking.

When Ron and I were married in 1979, he left his job as a college professor to enter the corporate world....where the money was! He did indeed steadily climb the so called corporate ladder. (this was possible in the 80's) I became increasingly upset that we did not follow suit with his co workers and purchase huge homes and expensive cars. Ron kept reminding me that we needed to be happy with what we had and remember how blessed we are. I had moments of great 'huff' over this and was not very ladylike at times.

Thank the dear Lord we listened to my wise husband as many of our friends have lost their huge homes and expensive lifestyles in the last 15 years as budget cuts have hit Ron's industry very hard.

Our home is lovely but not grand...but I have to admit over the years, all our friends who lived in these 'grand' homes always wanted to gather here at Bella Vista. Isn't life funny?

God is good.....all the time.

Love and hugs,
Barb

Sandra said...

What a wonderful post, Rebecca! A great reminder that we should feel blessed with what we do have.
Blessings,
Sandra

Marilyn said...

Dearest Rebecca,
What a wonderful heartfelt post. We have been married almost 41 yrs. now & believe me we have had our extremes financially as well as personally.
Somehow, we always managed to "hold it all together"......
Have a Wonderful Day!!
Hugs,
Marilyn
xxoo

Karen Valentine said...

Hi Rebecca! What a great reminder to all of us! I wanted to stop by and welcome you to my little WBC party .
(though not so little now) I think it's going to be great fun and very inspirational! Thanks for the mention on your blog. I really appreciate it.

xxxKaren
My Desert Cottage

Anonymous said...

Hi Rebecca,
I'm wondering if you've ever heard "Hell's Best Kept Secret" by Ray Comfort? If not, I'd love to send you a copy!
Have a great day!
Linda

Secondhandrose said...

Well it seems we all have struggled with that , but in the long run, we too made the right decision it seems to stay put in this house and use the money to put kids in wonderful schools. I still struggle at times with the green eyed monster though.

karen

Lee Laurie said...

I loved this post and I really needed to read it today. I have gotten discouraged with my 'little' cottage many times and I've only had it for a couple of years now. I've done a lot of work to it and it seems the work is never ending. I have to remind myself that I am blessed to have found it when I did and at such a great price. It has so much potential. I know one day it will be gorgeous! Its just a work in progress now. Thanks for this post today.
Hugs,
Lee Laurie

P.S. So many people here have lost their homes due to the economy. I know that I am blessed to have my little 'home sweet home'.

Wsprsweetly Of Cottages said...

I guess it probably goes without saying that having seven children and a husband that started in the Marine Corp as a Private...I have had little..and I remember those feelings of envy. I didn't want what others had..but...I wanted something like it so I learned to improvise.
Now...I treat myself to a pretty now and then..as you WELL know! :)
Having done so much sewing..etc. through the years and learning to do (sort of) lots of things to try and "keep up with the Jones" or Mrs. Jones who had money to spend, I learned how much work goes into those lovely items that are handmade, and painted etc. etc. and I appreciate them SO much. I usually opt for them..because I KNOW what it took to make them!

Now..sometimes "Mrs. Jones" like what I have. Home wise...I have never had a lot. I make what I have cozy and am now content. I have lost a home..and it was horrible, and humiliating and to this day I hurt when I think of it..but...we learned..that HOME is where the heart is and that can be anywhere. A cave...a tent...I will be content as long as my family is well...and safe.
Hugs to you, Rebecca! You are so dear!
Mona

Rebecca said...

To Karen: I can't even begin to tell you how many times the evil green-eyed monster presses in on me...it's a daily decision to be content with all I have~~~I can sooo relate to your feelings!

To Lee: Sweetie...I use to work in a very well-to-do area in our town. I owned a biz where very wealthy women often shopped or just came in to visit and chat. One of them asked me one day where I lived....I didn't want to say because I was ashamed that we didn't "have more" (or at least as much as she did!). When we almost lost the house I still live in I promised myself I'd NEVER AGAIN care that much what ANYONE thought. One last thing...one of those women, a regular customer of mine, recently emerged single after a long, bitter divorce battle. She lost almost everything. She told me the other day she'd give anything for a home like mine... One last thing...my hubbs and I never stop working on our home. But...it's become a labor of love. When it becomes overwhelming (and it does at times), we take a break... xoox

Rebecca said...

To Mona: I love your heart my friend. I was amazed to read the responses on the post I did not long ago which showed an array of homes here in my town. In almost every post and every email the women who commented GREATLY preferred homes that were cozy and charming.... You are right...if my family is safe and well then my heart is content as well! xo

June said...

Hi Rebecca,
You are such a love. This post is absolutely grand, as are all your posts. But isn't it wonderful when we can partner with each other and save ourselves heartache later? To be contented with what we have is a gift. I love the messages you leave for me. They make my day and inspire me so much. Your posts do that for me as well. I can't believe how great it is to know and love you.
Hugs,
June

VINTAGE BLISS COTTAGE said...

DEAR REBECCA,
I AM LEARNING VERY YOUNG THE MEANING OF KEEPING UP WITH THE JONES' OR TO JUST BE YOUR OWN AND WHO CARES WHO THEY ARE! IT IS HARD TO NOT WANT OR TO BE ENVIOUS, I HAVE FOUND EVEN AT 29 THAT THOSE THINGS DON'T MATTER, YES OUR NEIGHBORS HAVE NICER CARS, BUT I WOULDN'T WANT THEIR CAR PAYMENT, AND YES THEY MAY HAVE THIS AND THAT, BUT THE ONLY THINGS THAT TRULY MATTER IS THE HEALTH OF MY FAMILY, THAT MY PARENTS ARE FINANCIALLY OK, AND IF THEY NEED HELP AND THAT OUR BILLS ARE PAID AND THERE IS FOOD TO EAT. IT IS LIKE THE COUNTRY SAYING "SIMPLIFY" THANK YOU FOR YOUR COMMENT ON TODAYS POST. I AM MOST PROUD OF MY PRINCESS, SHE REALLY WORKED HARD FOR THAT 4.0... I KNOW SHE WILL DO WELL IN MIDDLE SCHOOL AND STAY TRUE TO HER FAITH AND OUR FAMILY VALUES, FOR EXAMPLE, SHE READS ROMANTIC HOMES AND VICTORIA MAGAZINE INSTEAD OF THE TEENIE BOPPER STUFF, SHE SAYS SHE DOESN'T WANT TO WASTE HER TIME WITH THOSE THINGS. BLESSINGS TO YOU AND YOURS, AND ENJOY YOUR WEEKEND TREASURE HUNT TO COME- HEATHER

Happy To Be/ Gl♥ria said...

Just another beautiful post my friend...Girl I have a hard time keeping up with myself to worry about the Jones...The most important thing in my life is my family...as a young bride I always wanted more...One day I just looked around my kitchen and thought where did I get all this stuff...I would give up every thing I owe just to have my Wally back for one day with me...none of these thing make me happy but he such did...Time is so short and so I enjoy each day now and I praise my God that he gave me yet another day to enjoy my healthy little family...may you have a great week my friend...hugs and smiles Gl♥ria

rosechicfriends said...

Hi Sweetie!
Thanks for your sweet comments on my latest blog...you are just so sweet and talented yourself! Gods blessings are so evident in all you do!

Oh, How I remember those early days...I think age and being tired of keeping up with what I have makes me want less now. My how things turn around huh? Now if I could only purge and let go of more it might help, lol!

Blessings,
Lorena

Tanza said...

Hi my Sweet ~r~,
What a sweet post again !! Soo very true, and I'm soo glad I've always been pretty much content with what I have .. Believe me, you know we live in a 1800 sq.ft.home.. Very small to most !! To me, I'm just so content to have and own a home, sleep in a big comfy pretty bed..hehehe..I have always been a collector of all sorts, and have always gotten soo much joy from my pretties..Love to change things around alot.. make new vignettes..fun..I have a healthy,incredibly,blessed family !! We all LoVe and adore each other most days..hahaha.. I feel bad for people who are never satisfied and continually want bigger and better..It's very typical of our world and generation..Always searching for worldly contentment and satisfaction..Some of my favorite memories of being young is just being home with family and having game night and nights where we just sat and crafted, making new fun things for Barbie dolls, or new clothes to wear to Church on Sunday..Simple things, that cost almost nothing..I agree with Heather and think we just all need to "Simplify".. Believe me, when I say I am blessed, and God is good, and I hope no matter what my life may bring, that my heart will find contentment and happiness always.. and yes to feel always blessed and satisfied!! Yes, My God is good, and continually shines HIS mercy and grace on me !! I LoVe my sweet friend, and have to admit, I NEVER feel like I have enough of your BEAUTIFUL creations, and I soo have to remember to be content !! hahaha..They tempt me always.. yes they do !!! Blessings and love always to you my friend... huggers ~tea~xo

My Pink & Cream Cottage said...

What a beautiful post Rebecca I love your Wednesday's *Love is*.... good grief how I can relate to this post I think we all have a green eyed monster living within us.... I have learnt over the years to be more content with what I have a tiny 3 bedroom cottage that has the most smallest lounge room you can imagine but I know one day we will have the extensions built on it just all takes time......

Love to you my beautiful friend

Lyn xxx

A Stitch In Thyme said...

Not only is keeping up with the Jone's depleting of the wallet but it's emotionally exhausting. Hence why I decided years ago, to go at my own pace. Almost everything I own was bought on sale, bartered or found at flea market. When you think of the state of our economy, one would have to conclude that keeping up with the Jone's, in the end, proved detrimental to all. Also, many of the children today have a sense of entitlement because they see the adults behaving in this very manner. So sad when a child is not taught the value of the dollar. Even sadder when as an adult, they chase it.

I love this post. It's a reminder to myself and all the others who work so diligently to obtain the things they love and learn to love what they have.

glenda said...

Hello Rebecca, thank you for the sweet comment on my blog...it's nice to meet an Oklahoma gal on here. I am going to add you to my list of favorites.
Thanks again,
glenda@SerendipityCottage

Bellamere Cottage said...

Hi Rebecca.......

What a great post. I think that one of the keys to happiness is being grateful for what we have, don't you?? We live in a beensie house, without a lot of the fancy things others have, and yet I feel so blessed. I used to have a friend...(still a friend, actually) that bragged that her husband brought home the family $$$$ in a wheelbarrow. Oh, how that used to frustrate me. I worked so hard and wanted nice things too. VERY sadly, her husband was killed at work in 1992. He was such a great guy...I still miss him. No amount of money could replace him....not even a wheelbarrow full. And, many who have much will never be able to put together the beautiful and utterly charming home you enjoy! And, not to brag....at all, because I do give ALL of the GLORY to GOD for my abilities....but, me too!

I got a huge tickle out of your navy room. I had one too! Oh, and the gold and green one too! :-) I had a HUGE green and gold plastic flower arrangement that made me feel as though I'd arrived. Oh that's funny.

Have a wonderful weekend dear, sweet Rebecca.....

Hugs,
Spence

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