Even in our darkest hour, it’s amazing how God’s creation can make us smile.
This truth makes life worth living – even with all the problems we face.
We have to see the color, even through the gray clouds of pain.
Ugh. Perseverance. A word that will conjure up the thought of work.
But did you ever think of it as waiting?
Waiting is work, too. But not in the sense of using too much emotional, physical, or mental energy. It’s deciding not to give up and so you will wait as long as it takes. You never know what is just around the corner. Things change in a moment, a day, a week, or a year.
So why not take the attitude of being optimistic?
It’s a choice. It has nothing to do with how you feel. Once you make the choice to persevere – not give up – watch how you will feel.
No matter how bitterly cold and snowy the winter is, the forsythia blooms, the robins make their nests, and the meadows are dotted with cheery buttercups and happy daisies.
This is the promise of hope.
Don’t give up.
When you’re having a difficult time, do you just want to pull down the shades, lock the door, and turn off the phone?
I know the feeling.
But I’ve discovered something.
If you do something that you don’t feel like doing, you may be surprised what it does for you.
See, our emotions can play tricks on us. In fact, they can make us feel things are worse than they really are. Don’t get me wrong. Emotions are good. It’s just that we can be led by them instead of us leading them.
I know there’s some really bad stuff that can happen. I’ve experienced betrayal, hatred, abuse, rejection, abandonment, and the death of my son.
I have not been raped, beaten, or mugged. I have not suffered hunger, addiction, homelessness, eating disorders, or severe poverty. But others have. And I know some of those people. They have moved through their struggle or are still dealing with it. Yet, they have found life still brings pleasure and happiness. And usually it’s with the simple things – making time for a movie or coffee with a friend, sitting in the park, or whatever it is they would enjoy.
Life goes on – with you or without you.
You just have to find it. It’s there if you look.
But all too often, some of us wallow in the discouragement by putting all our eggs in one basket! If it doesn’t go the way we planned, we think there are no other options.
There are. And many have found that to be true.
Sometimes, we’re the one who causes pain.
When I think in those terms, I am not so ready to be angry at someone who has hurt me.
This is humility.
Humility is taking your rightful place in God’s creation, yet, submitting yourself to the bigger picture.
We don’t say we’re sorry enough. Far too often, we make it about us and our feelings. Our feelings count. But so do the feelings of others.
In Christianity, the focus is on loving God and your neighbor. Jesus said these were the greatest commandments and if you are doing this, “the rest” will fall into place. If you think about it, it’s because all of our thoughts, words, and actions are affecting God or our neighbor.
When you give and don’t think about yourself first, you are a happier person.
Challenge: For the next 7 days, say you are sorry to one person every day. See how humble it makes you feel.
You may have had an abortion.
Deep inside, you may wonder if it was right or wrong.
You may feel the emotional pain from terminating your pregnancy, even if you were okay with it at the time.
If you are struggling with having an abortion, I have something to tell you. God forgives. You may not think you did anything wrong to need forgiveness. But the fact you are feeling so miserable, or the abortion still haunts you after several years, you may be dealing with guilt.
We are limited in our human understanding – as amazing as we are! We are wired to be hurt by our actions.
But the good part is God is merciful. The Bible tells us so much about how God is compassionate toward us.
God is not punishing you. God loves you. And He wants more than you know to not feel the guilt. He forgives when we go to Him. And only He, the one who made you, is able to erase the past.