Is it time to stop my ice baths?

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Okay–here’s some personal info about me. I am 54 years old, married, with 5 kids. Three of them are out of the house (or will be shortly). One just graduated high school, and one just graduated from college (so he too, might also be gone soon).

We also have had a heated pool for the past fifteen years or so. For those who have a pool, you know that it takes a lot of time and money to keep it maintained. But, I am not complaining. One of the things I really have enjoyed over the years is getting a good book and floating on a raft– soaking in the joy of learning and the sun’s rays.

However, this Spring, my heater went out in the pool. I was bummed. Now, when I jump in, its refreshing. I imagine it to be like one of those famous “post-game” ice baths that LeBron James or Ronaldo take. Okay, maybe not that bad.

Anyway, with my kids not really around too much, the thoughts have come to my mind, “is it really worth the cost of getting a new heater or fixing it ? Or even, maybe I should just empty the pool all together and be done with it.

Here’s my point in all this family background info: times change. It is important for me to be willing to adjust to those changes, just like a good businessman adjusts to changing market conditions, or a good coach adjusts to some new strategy from the opposing coach.

What’s really important during these “negative circumstances” is my perspective. Its key to my keeping emotionally healthy. Rather than looking at the negatives and what I might not have any longer (heated swims, relaxing reading times in the sun, playing pool volleyball, etc.), I need to recognize the cost:value ratio reality of maintaining the pool and that for the most part, I’m the only one that regularly uses the pool. In other words, with my wife and I trying to keep a close eye on our finances, there will be a positive cost savings financially if we close down the pool.

I also need to realize that this apparent negative might actually be something positive from God. True, I will miss some fun in the sun. But, maybe all that sunshine that I so enjoy might actually be leading up to skin cancer from all those sun’s rays. Who knows? So, with that health perspective in mind, its a good thing, a very good thing that I am being prevented from continuing to soak up those rays.

It kind of reminds me of the story of Joseph, where he says to his brothers (who had cruelly sold him in to slavery), “what you meant for evil God has used it for good”. As a side note, because of Joseph being eventually led to Egypt, he was used by God to help Pharaoh and the land of Egypt survive a very harsh famine.

So, right now, are there any negative circumstances in your life? Rather than dwelling on how you might be losing out, or what you don’t have, or any other negative or bitter thought, how about trying to think about the positives that this circumstance could be producing. What new opportunities, what good things could be produced from this situation?

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