Let it go

I love our home in Maine. One of my favorite things is to be snug in bed on a cold, rainy day, like today, warmed by the fireplace set between two windows, one facing the sea, the other the river. Who wouldn’t feel close to HaShem and inspired to write??!!

From my home office window on the other side of the house we face the cove and ocean as well, so I love to sit at my desk there with similar thoughts (when not working, of course.) On that side is our shared parking area with our neighbor who likes to park on the grassy part of that space which actually is intended to support cars even though it looks like a lawn. When we bought this property we fortified that area specifically to be able to support cars parking there (underground wire mesh and gravel) but we need to maintain it yearly with tamping and reseeding in order to deal with inevitable rut damage.

The last couple springs have presented challenges when scheduling this yard work since our neighbor has needed this area for her car due to improvements they have been making to their yard and driveway. The result is we have not been able to maintain it causing the area to have ever worsening ruts from her car tires. So lately, when I look out the window and see her car parked there, I get irritated. I have trouble appreciating the beautiful view and instead I tend to focus on the damage to our lawn from her tires. I find this very aggravating even though I have to go out of my way to even see this part of our lot since I don’t work from home as much and so am not often in my home office looking down at the driveway on that side of the house.

The truth is the problem isn’t my neighbor parking her car there. The problem is my head. We become such prisoners of our thoughts. Clearly my sense of emotional well being can be grateful, content, peaceful. All I have to do is look out 99% of the windows in case I need to be reminded of all that He has provided. Or I can fixate on that one view from my home office window and drag down my day.

I’m actually glad I’ve been troubled by this for it is HaShem’s way to teach. How often do we tend to focus on the problems and not the blessings? How often do we make mountains out of mole hills? How often do we even take the time to notice all that He has provided? Or we do appreciate but fixate on some small thing that has an amazing ability to drag us down in spite of all the good in our lives. When we live in a state of gratitude, how much we smile, how light our hearts.

Some things we can’t let go, but so often, the matters that we dig in on are petty, or revealing of something in us that needs improvement – our need to control, our loss of perspective of what’s really important in life, our focus on giving to others, our sense of gratitude.

As I look at the deep rain-filled ruts caused by my neighbor’s tires on our grassy lawn, I will look with new eyes of thankfulness at the many blessings and be happy that we can share with another in need. How peaceful the feeling to just let it go.

Shabbat shalom.

About the Author
  1. Stacey E. Stevens

    I know what you mean. Yesterday, our workplace held one of its quarterly employee luncheons. Each time, the owners bring in caterers from different types of restaurants and allow us to extend our lunch half-hours by a ‘free’ bonus fifteen minutes in order that we might enjoy fellowshipping with our fellow employees while enjoying the food.

    Yesterday they brought in a burger place that offered regular beef burgers in addition to turkey and veggie burgers along with various toppings, plus salads, drinks, and desserts. This is a great kindness (not to mention expense!) on the part of our employers, and they do it with great joy.

    Never having had a turkey burger before, I decided that this would be a good opportunity to try one. I figured that even if I didn’t particularly end up liking it all that much, it was better to find it out in this context as opposed to paying for one somewhere and then not liking it.

    While I was standing in line to get mine , it was announced that the vendors had run out of beef burgers and that the only available choices were now either turkey or veggie burgers. There were a lot of disappointed groans from several folks in the queue, which was understandable. What was not understandable was the extended complaining that continued as employees sat at the tables eating – with the company president’s son sitting right within earshot. I even heard an expletive or two!

    Granted not everyone who works at Christian Book Distrbutors is a Christian (they are an equal opportunity employer), but whatever religion one subscribes to (even for those who claim to follow no religion in particular), common courtesy (one would hope) would dictate a spirit of thankfulness. It reminded me of how displeased HaShem was with our people’s grumbling while in the desert, complaining to ‘this Moses’ about ‘this manna’ and how they wanted to return to Egypt where at least there were melon, leeks, fish, cucumbers, etc…small wonder that HaShem kept us wandering in the desert for forty years, until that generation had died, before finally bringing us to The Promised Land, and even then, we still failed to do what was right in His sight.

    If only we had learned to let our grumbling and complaining go after G- finally caused Pharaoh to ‘let My people go’! Just goes to show you that even we believers we are always ‘in process’, always learning to examine the ‘self within our selves’, so that we can finally not only let it (meaning our sinful natures) go and be crucified along with our sinless and long-suffering Messiah, Who selflessly let His very life go as an atonement for our sins. And that is truly something for which we can be eternally thankful.

    Hugz in HaShem –


Leave a Reply