2005-02-07 // 12:15 p.m.
Reality check

Sometimes I need a reality check. Here lately I've found myself getting more and more stressed thinking about things like whether to buy a bigger home, buy a car, how to best use the extra money I'll be getting between my yearly bonus and my tax returns to pay off certain bills before others. Growing up, I've always heard the old phrase that money doesn't make you happy and it won't solve all your problems. I always thought that was a bunch of boloney, but as I find myself getting older and more comfortable, I'm finding it to be true. If someone would have told me 10 years ago that I'd be living in the house I am now and making the salary I am now, the 10 years younger me would have said he'd be totally content. But yet, here I am 10 years later and I find myself stressing about whether to buy a bigger house, or purchase this or that, or the best way to be almost debt free in a year. Not that wanting to be debt free is wrong, It's actually biblical, but I sometimes forget to be thankful that I'm even in a position to have that option. Then, like today, I'll come across something that puts everything back into perspective.

Today I read an article in the Washington Post about families in my county living in the old obsolete motels because the prices of houses and apartments in this county have risen so steeply lately that they can't afford to live anywhere else. So for $175 dollars a week, these families call a motel room home. They cook on hotplates and walk to the roadside phone booth to make phone calls. No cable TV, no internet access, none of the amenities that I take for granted everyday. Here I am with a 4 bedroom house with an inground pool on a nice piece of land, getting depressed because I don't have that extra 5th bedroom or extra garage that I'd really like, and then here's a man with a wife and 3 kids who's sharing a single motel room. A man who would love to move his family into a house, ANY house, but just can't afford it on his $300 a week salary. His 9 year old son will continue to grow up calling a motel room home, and dreaming of one day becoming a mechanic so he can help his daddy buy a house.

So everyday, I'm going to strive to be more thankful for all the many blessings God has poured on me. Thankful for the home I share with my wonderful, healthy family. Thankful for the car I drive, and the job I have.

To steal a quote from my favorite movie, "I really have a wonderful life." Somethimes, I just need a little help to see it.

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you decide - 2004-11-29