“We can complain because rose bushes have thorns, or rejoice because thorn bushes have roses.”
Lincoln is hot right now—both the regular version and the vampire hunter variety. I could do worse than quote him, and this is one of my favourites. It means that the nature of a thing or a situation doesn’t change, but we choose how to perceive it.
In his determined, plodding way, Lincoln told us to choose to look for the beauty in a thing or a situation. If we look for something to complain about, we will find it. If we look for the beauty, we enjoy it instead. We don’t pretend the thorns don’t exist—we acknowledge their purposeful aspects—but we choose to celebrate the beauty instead.
Sometimes we have real doozies of thorns in our lives: deaths or serious illnesses. Sometimes we have to really struggle to see even a bud of a rose, but if we keep at it, a rosebud appears.
This was a favourite quote of a friend of mine who battled cancer. She had to acknowledge that thorn, but she celebrated the beauty in her life in spite of it, or sometimes because of it.
Do you feel a little grumpy today? Do you have some complaints? Acknowledge that, but look for the beauty. For sure, you will find a rosebud or two.