One String

The longer I live, the more I realize the impact of attitude on life. Attitude, to me, is more important than facts. It is more important than the past, the education, the money, than circumstances, than failure, than successes, than what other people think or say or do. The remarkable thing is we have a choice everyday regarding the attitude we will embrace for that day. We cannot change our past… we cannot change the fact that people will act in a certain way. We cannot change the inevitable. The only thing we can do is play on the one string we have, and that is our attitude. ~ Chuck Swindoll

I had a bad day.

I woke up with headache. The internet wouldn’t connect. I spent hours on the phone trying to resolve an issue with Direct TV. It rained most of the day.

I got a little bad news and some good news that was bigger than the bad news. It didn’t matter.

It’s nightfall and my headache is just a dull one. My Verizon WiFi won’t connect but the intermittent park internet seems to be working. The TV still can’t find the satellite but I don’t watch much TV anyway.

The rain stopped late in the afternoon. I watched two white egrets fish and two strange looking ducks walk the banks of the bayou, conversationally quacking. Normally I would have been enthralled by the egrets, laughed at the peculiar ducks and found the sunset lovely. Normally the good news would have outweighed the bad. But not today, because today I chose to have a bad day.

Do you know what I mean?

All day long, I knew the weight in my gut was the one I was allowing to rot there, but I just didn’t feel like taking out the trash. It’s an odd sort of selfish indulgence. Today I lost all opportunity to be of any encouragement to anyone.

I had a bad day, untouched by my abundance of blessings, my lack of need and the outpouring of grace in my life.

Will tomorrow be better? Yes. Could today have been a good day? Yes.

Everyday is a new day to choose. I have the same one string I always have. Today I chose to play it low.

If you’ve been reading TMG for a while, you know about my jukebox brain. I couldn’t help but think of Daniel Powter when I was writing this. ๐Ÿ˜‰

Author: Debbie

A former counselor and public speaker, I'm grateful for many, many things - God's grace most of all!

31 thoughts on “One String”

  1. Hi, Debbie. I’m so far behind. Sorry about that. Also sorry to hear about your bad day. I know exactly what you mean. I’ve chosen to have bad days, too. What’s bad is when I can’t even figure out why I’m in a bad mood.

    Oh, and Direct TV never works when it rains… ๐Ÿ™‚

    1. Oh Jeff – you get it – EXACTLY! I chose it and I didn’t even know why…

      I guess it’s a good thing I live in Texas if I’m going to keep Direct TV, huh? I may as well give it up if I ever move back to Oregon! ๐Ÿ˜‰

      Always good to see you, my friend, and I’m always behind – you never need to apologize. Just drop by when you feel like it and have the time. Please never feel any pressure.
      ~ Debbie

  2. Thank you Debbie, and thank you, Chuck Swindoll! Makes me think of Viktor Frankl’s truth that the only freedom that can never be taken from us is our freedom to choose our response.

    You can’t relive your day, but sounds like you are in the process of retrieving it’s reminders that in spite of things beyond our control, we hold the power to decide how we will choose to face it. I look forward to hearing about your new day.

    1. Paulann โ€“ I love the way your mind takes me to forgotten places. I read Manโ€™s Search for Meaning so long ago, Iโ€™d all but forgotten logotherapy. I donโ€™t think thereโ€™s anyone who can speak with more credibility about not allowing our freedom to be taken from us than a Holocaust survivor.
      I love the way you put it: โ€˜you canโ€™t relive your day, but you can retrieve itโ€™s reminders that in spite of things beyond our control, we hold the power to decide how we will choose to face it.โ€™
      Beautifully said. Thank you, dear Paulann.
      ~ Debbie

  3. But what Swindoll said is so true: We cannot choose a pain-free day, ducks or no ducks. The only thing we can choose each day is if we will give thanks in all circumstances. I sure know how you feel, though, having migraines for about 30 years and weak Internet ever since it was invented. Ha.

    1. oh katharine – all day long I knew the truth that would set me free and all day long, I chose to stay locked up. And I didn’t even have a migraine – just an all day headache with no heartache to explain my self indulgence. Praying wasn’t a high priority because I kept looking around with my eyes closed. I woke up yesterday with them open again. ๐Ÿ˜‰
      ~ Debbe

    1. Noel – ๐Ÿ˜€ Interesting that you would add that. It was in the next paragraph in the section I was quoting from Chuck Swindoll.: “I am convinced that life is 10% what happens to me and 90% how I react to it. And so it is with you… we are in charge of our attitudes.”- Charles Swindoll
      Thanks for adding that, Noel!
      ~Debbie

  4. Oh my sis–so sorry about the bad day and headache. As the above comments say, you truly are a fine, and inspiring, example for us–to be open and honest about the full reality. It’s true that we have bad days, and it’s also true we have a choice about our attitude. The important thing to remember is to keep “practicing” on that one string of choice–and not to beat ourselves up for having a bad mood/day/attitude. The enemy does that quite well without our help, so don’t lend him a hand!

    I love you dearly, and pray this is a much better day–sending you some Caddo Delight through the heavenly telegraph wires (it works without Internet/Direct TV etc)!! God bless you BIG!

    1. Dear Caddo – The Delight came through with perfect reception! Thank you! I think all I need now are a few inspiring Haiku’s and I’ll be entirely righted.
      AND I know just where to find them! See you soon! ๐Ÿ˜€
      ~ Debbie

      1. Oh, pshaw! I’ve got the best “Debbie Sisters” in the world! Haiku’s comin’ right up–you want ’em with sprinkles on top? No extra charge! xxxooo, Caddo

  5. I’m so sorry to be late to the down day! I know it sucks to have them. I’m glad you were able to ride it out … just “Let It Be” ;-). Thank you for sharing with us, i know you truly are an eternal optimist (or try MUCH harder than the rest of us) ๐Ÿ˜‰

    A new day will bring a new shape in attitude.

    It’s a Good thing to be alive and feeling: Even on bad days. Love, melis

    1. melis – ๐Ÿ˜€
      You always make me smile. Yes, it is good to be alive and feeling. I tried the ‘not feeling’ for a while, some years ago. That led to some very bad days.
      Thank you, Rock Star!
      ~ Debbie

    1. mt – you have a very kind heart. Sometimes the brevity of my writing here – or maybe just my choice of words – makes my point somewhat obscure. Thanks for always reading what I meant to say. ๐Ÿ˜€
      ~ Debbie

  6. Oh my Debbie, you are being too hard on yourself. When we are in pain, like a headache, no one and especially God, expects us to carry on in our normal fashion. I know you were not mean spirited as you don’t have a mean bone in your body. Bless you my friend and I know today, without a headache, will be better. Love ya.

    1. Jill, my sweet friend – even when the headache got better, I didn’t.
      Heidi says I get like that about once a year (I’m afraid it may be more often than that).
      I don’t think I get mean, more despondent, I suppose. Anyway, I certainly wasn’t a joy to live with. Halfway through the day, I was already tired of myself. ๐Ÿ˜‰
      I’ve been praying for you. I hope you haven’t frozen to the gate down there!
      love you, too!
      ~ Debbie

  7. Wish I could give you a hug. Thanks for sharing gracious one. I recognized that “weight in my gut”. ! So thankful that His mercies are new every morning and we get more chances to choose. love you!
    I thought about a friend who homeschooled 3 young children all week, while her hubby was a truck driver and gone a lot. One Sunday she was struggling and sent the hubby and kids on to church without her. When someone asked where she was, the kids piped up with, “mom’s home having a pity party.” She needed a hug too!
    And I am praying for you like you pray for me . . .for more egrets and funny ducks and beautiful sunsets tomorrow. I like to think about those things being God’s love notes to us. I got a funny note from Him earlier this week. We kept seeing big birds as we drove to my daughter’s dentist appt. Hawks and seagulls and even vultures. There were two vultures circling above the meat market.
    God bless you beautiful hearted one! -the other deb

    1. Deb – Hmm… Vultures circling the meat market is love note wrapped in fun!
      I received your hug, and it helped. Thank you. ๐Ÿ˜€
      It was simply a day where, all day long, I had the power to choose to be happy and I chose to be in a funk instead. Not particularly typical of me and certainly not attractive. The sad part was, I knew it while I was doing it, and I kept right on anyway. Fortunately, I’m very quiet when I’m too low on the string, so at least I don’t have anything to unsay. I did have a black cloud apology to make.
      The egrets and the funny ducks came back today. This time I opened my mail!
      ~ Debbie

    1. Hello Jen – Not much wifi since I’ve tried to post this comment 3xs – and still no TV, giving me a good excuse to rent The Help, which I’d been wanting to see since it was released. Spent half of the day working on taxes and the other half not catching fish. It was a good day. ๐Ÿ˜€
      Thunderstorms are predicted for tomorrow but I’m expecting indoor sun!
      grace and peace to you, my friend,
      ~ Debbie

  8. Been there, done that. Sorry you had a bad day Debbie. ๐Ÿ˜ฆ
    Tomorrow is coming my friend, great thing about tomorrow is that it is a new day…a fresh opportunity to have a good day!
    May tomorrow treat you better then today, may tomorrow a smile grace your face, may tomorrow the sun shine on you, may tomorrow the sorrow of today be gone.
    Be well Debbie!

    1. Dear Greg – Tomorrow came yesterday (I’m slow responding here). I almost caught 3 fish, or I almost caught one fish 3 times! It was a great day! Thank you for your kind heart and kind words.
      ~ Debbie

  9. hi debbie. so sorry you had a bad day. but…i am happy you decided to share it with us. makes me feel a bit more connected to you. you are the psychologist (is that how you spell it?) so you will have to help me figure out why. love you, and keep blogging please. gg

    1. gaye – hello dear friend!
      So you’re wondering why my sharing a bad day makes you feel more connected to me? I would guess it’s because we all have them and it’s very hard to feel connected to anyone who doesn’t seem to have any. ๐Ÿ˜‰
      You know more than most anyone about my bad days, when more than just my attitude was bad. Friday was simply a day when I chose to not try to make it a good day. No excuses.
      Thank you for loving me, good attitude or bad. You’ll always be dear to my heart,
      ~ Debbie

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