Last Updated on March 20, 2018

Yesterday, I came downstairs at 7:30 and announced to my husband that I was headed out for my walk “before it got too much hotter” or I may have said, “before it gets any steamier” or something mildly derogatory about the temperature and air quality. He quickly said, “I really want to work on not being critical and negative. I feel like I’ve been slipping into that lately.”

This is a conversation we’ve had repeatedly over the last ten or more years. He was not aiming his comments at me and I knew it. My husband made a promise to himself that he was not going to grow old and grouchy at the same time. He watched several family members on his side become critical and gripey and just unpleasant to be around. We have no control over our years as Psalm 16 says, “in Your book were all written the days that were ordained for me, when as yet there was not one of them,” but we do have control over our attitudes and what comes out of our mouths.

I don’t enjoy walking in high humidity and high temperatures. I much prefer the cool of autumn or early spring. But my husband’s reminder was a good one for me to give thanks in all things. “This is the day the Lord has made. Let us rejoice and be glad in it.” We are both committed to not begging for sympathy by talking about our aches and ailments to others. And we are equally committed to not complaining constantly about life and our circumstances. We want to be joyful as we age.

This morning when I went walking, early again, I started thinking about the good things that come with our heat and humidity. Right now it is peach season and nothing is better than southern peaches. I bought my first sack yesterday and plan to go pick a bushel in the next few days. During peach season we eat peaches every day in a variety of ways and just having them in bowls and lined up on the window sill to finish ripening makes my kitchen happy. I love the color and smell of them.

A bit later in the summer we’ll have loads of fresh black eyes peas, purple hull peas, butter beans, green beans, cornbread and south Arkansas pink tomatoes. Followed by more peaches. All of this is enjoyed with fresh, cold iced tea sweetened or not, with lemon. To really appreciate cold iced tea you have to be HOT!!! And all these goodies from local farmers have to have lots of sun and heat and moisture and rain to grow.

So I’m giving thanks for all the good things that come our way in the South in the summer. And I will not complain about the weather but enjoy the bounty that God provides.

And you can be sure I’ll be giving thanks for air conditioning, too!

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  1. This was a really good reminder for me. Thank you.
    I’m thankful for:
    Peas overflowing out of a garden
    Warm rain on my skin at a game
    The tan that came from my long (unexpected) walk when I got lost.

  2. Barbara, where do you get your peaches from here? I’m longing for some good ones, and the ones I got at the farmer’s market last weekend weren’t great. =)

  3. Boy, I need this reminder daily. I've noticed that I come by a critical spirit naturally (no, duh). Even when we go out to eat (a break for Mom), I analize my food to the point that I lose the enjoyment and perhaps so do those with me. I was blind to this until my daughter gently pointed it out for me. How can I expect my husband and children to be positive if I maintain a critical spirit. 1 John 1:9!

  4. HSB Suzanne says:

    I definitely need to remind myself of this daily… if not every minute! Thank you for your openness on this blog.