It's 5 o'clock in the morning and I'm awake, reminded of the treachery of my childhood. By sheer cunning and deceit my sister played Jacob to my lack-of-foresight Esau and all these years later I can't sleep.
While my sister, Gayle, is older than I am, she voluntarily, and without coercion, chose to take a smaller bedroom when my family moved to a new home when we were children. Her room was pink with the ever-popular wall covering, "contact paper" in decorative flowers stuck to the walls which probably explains why she liked it. My room, on the other hand, was less girl friendly and I liked it that way.
It's still unclear to me how she did it, but Gayle convinced me that by being firstborn, she had the right to express a change of heart. SHE WANTED THE LARGER ROOM. I don't recall any promises of stew or birthright but somehow she got her way and I found myself among scentless flowers in a hot pink room.
The room was slightly more than a walk-in closet. The room-swap was unfair and Gayle knew it, but frankly she showed absolutely no remorse for her deceptive tendencies. She moved immediately into making her new luxury suit into something she could call her own. Pictures of the latest Hollywood hero's moved to the walls of my old room, until there wasn't room for anything else.
I tried to hang up a manly picture of a mountainous scene, muscular deer sensing danger, ready to bolt at a moments notice, steam rising from their nostrils on the winter morning in question. No matter how majestic that may have been, it did little to offset the spring garden motif discovered by diverting your eyes only slightly in any direction. Being a boy of very little funds and suffering from an acute lack of skill in the art of interior decorating I could do little but suffer through my fate.
My new room also had yet another distinct disadvantage - it was home to millions of spiders. Now, I don't have proof of this, it's just that I began to believe that if I shut the lights out in my room at night that little eight-legged creatures would quietly pour through any tiny crack and make their way to my bed and wait patiently for me to go to sleep, although I'm not sure what devious plot they had in mind. Perhaps my back made a great place for a spider square dance.
When I could no longer stand the suspense, and with more than a mild case of the creeps, I would reach my hand upward hoping to avoid the little beasts and turn on the light. I think they knew that I was going to do this because when I turned on the lights - THEY WERE GONE! I think they could only stand the pink room with flowers when the lights were off. In this, I could relate.
I didn't want to add to their penchant for late night carousing so I stayed awake until my entire family was asleep and then I would turn my lights on so that all those juvenile delinquent spiders would be forced to stay home.
I'm sure this helped them in spider school and in getting along with their parents. I just wanted to do my part. Call it tough love if you will.
Friends were not permitted in my room either. This was a self-imposed ban. I didn't want them to be required to undergo some kind of radical color therapy when they grew up, so I became adept at covert maneuvers that relocated our friendly gatherings to the park or at their house, but never in the "pink room".
I was in high school when we finally found enough time and money to convert my room from the aforementioned pink to a quaint paneling that featured cattle brand marks on it and a ceiling with synthetic wood framed light fixtures. The remnants of a recessed window that was no longer in service would serve as a display area for all my important stuff. I was pleased - the pink was gone!
You know, I just thought of something. I was at a seminar in high school and the speaker said something I have never forgotten, "You will never be content with what you want, until you're content with what you have." Even the Apostle Paul learned that in all things and in every circumstance he could be content.
God doesn't always place us in circumstances we might prefer. Yet if we follow His lead in the circumstances we face, we not only will learn something, but we might even come away with fond memories of the goodness of God.
Now if only I could figure out what it was that I was supposed to learn from the "Pink Room" maybe I could get some sleep?
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