It Could Always Be Worse by Margot Zemach reminds us of that very fact.
This Caldecott Honor Book retells the Yiddish folktale of a large family living together in a tiny house. The father goes to the Rabbi for advice who tells him to bring his chickens into the house with him. Well, this only causes more chaos so the father returns again for advice and the Rabbi tells him to bring the goat in as well.
This pattern repeats itself until the rooster, goose, and cow are all living under one roof. Finally, the Rabbi tells the father to kick the animals out, resulting in a very, very peaceful night.
The father finally recognizes what a pleasure his life now is.
Great life lessons here–of gratitude, appreciation, perspective, etc. Recognition of what a blessed life we all lead and often take for granted.
It could always be worse is a great motto to live by. If only I’d remember this more when miniscule problems take over my mind when I should be focused elsewhere or when I should quit carrying things I should have handed over to God long ago.