Imagine yourself, sitting in a newly constructed room. You looked up and you see such a perfect tile ceiling. However, while you are admiring the ceiling, you notice one tile is missing. From then on, no matter how beautiful the ceiling is, you can’t fully enjoy its beauty just because of one single missing tile. So you finally called the maintenance and have the missing tile replaced. After that, you now have the perfect ceiling once again.
Now, let me shift your concentration on our lives today. All of us have something that we don’t have. Those are the missing tiles in our lives. However, there are just some tiles that no matter how hard you try, it can never be replaced or fixed. The missing tile in the ceiling can be replaced and once again make the ceiling look perfect. But sadly, there is no such thing as a PERFECT life. You will never come to the point that your ceiling will all have the tiles.
There is a big DANGER when you concentrate on the missing tiles in your life. It can make you dissatisfied, ungrateful, remorseful, and unhappy. At this point in time, you might be suffering from the Missing Tile Syndrome.
“The Missing Tile Syndrome” is a term coined by Dennis Prager. It simply means focusing on the things that we don’t have and in the process, robbing ourselves of happiness.
Are you suffering from the Missing Tile Syndrome? Do we focus on the things that we don’t have, rather than the things that we have?
So what are the best antidotes to cure the Missing Tile Syndrome? In this article, let us go to the Bible and I want to share with you three ways on how we can avoid the Missing Tile Syndrome.
Point no. 1: Avoid covetousness
“Let your conduct be without COVETOUSNESS; be content with such things as you have. For He Himself has said, “I will never leave you nor forsake you.”” (Hebrews 13:5)
What is covetousness? It is the strong desire to acquire something that belongs to other people. If you notice, covetousness starts with the mind. Though some people might not see your thought, the desire to have something can become too strong, that you’ve always been thinking about it, that your words and action made it obvious.
Covetousness can be deceitful because you can never have enough of what you covet. It is also damaging to one’s life because of its insatiable cravings. Finally, covetousness can lead to other sins such as stealing, lying, adultery, murder, and the list just goes on and on.
Point no. 2: Be thankful
“In everything give thanks; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you” (I Thessalonians 5:18).
Do you want to know God’s will for you? His will for you is to be thankful. God is truly faithful. He will never leave us empty. He might ask us to drop something, but He will ask us to pick something way BETTER than what we expected. Being thankful is a wonderful attribute. It prevents you from being bitter to what other people have and helps you concentrate on the things that God has blessed you with.
In this life, we may never have everything, but God makes sure that we always have something. Even in times of trials, we still have to be thankful, because we know those trials come with the great mercies of God.
Choose to be thankful and enjoy the warm, fuzzy and happy feeling from it. This is exponentially better than being envious and bitter towards other people.
Point no. 3: Be content
“Now godliness with contentment is great gain. For we brought nothing into this world, and it is certain we can carry nothing out. And having food and clothing, with these we shall be content” (I Timothy 6:6-8).
Contentment is a state of mind. It is knowing that we don’t really actually own anything in this world, but everything are owned by God. We are just stewards and caretaker of those things. When you lose something, it is really not that hard to part from it since you know it wasn’t yours in the first place. It is also easier for you to give or share when you know that God owns everything.
Contentment is the assurance that in whatever situation you may be, God is always in control. Contentment helps you to avoid looking at what’s missing in your life, but rather focusing on the things that you have.
Contentment should be coupled with godliness. Contentment does not mean that you should not seek to improve yourself. It doesn’t mean that you should be content with just being a burden to others while knowing very well that you could have done better. God expects you to become the best that you can be – given that you do it according to His will.
The Missing Tile Syndrome is a big obstacle towards happiness and blessedness. If you come to think about it, accepting your situation, being thankful and content are the best ways to overcome the Missing Tile Syndrome. Let it not continue to rob your happiness. Thank God for the “tiles” in your life and live a better and happier life!
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