earlier this morning i was reading my email when an email from simple truths caught my eye. it was an article (advertising mac anderson's new book, learning to dance in the rain) about this guy who had overcome some incredible odds to be an outstanding musician. everyone loves to hear inspiring stories like these.
i think about paul, who did some of his best writing in prison. i think about joseph who had weathered countless injustices but never complained. . . he praised. would i have that same attitude if i found myself in a similar circumstance?
nah. . . i would more than likely whine and be a wear-your-heart-on-your-sleeve kinda girl. but i'm trying to learn how to approach my problems with a different attitude.
when we're in the pit of darkness, it's so easy to get mired in our misery and wallow (or if you're in the south, i think it's officially known as waller) in it. we can't see any way to climb out, and discouragement sets in. . .
and really, whining and complaining never gets me anywhere close to out of the pit. it only serves to drag down those around me or make it really uncomfortable to be around me. i've heard it called joy-stealing.
that makes me grimace. and it makes me feel guilty that i've robbed someone of a little corner of joy.
i don't know who said this, but i think it's really a great reminder. . . "life is not about waiting for the storms to pass...it's about learning how to dance in the rain!"
because really, when i look around and see what some people are dealing with, my troubles seem miniscule in comparison. i need to focus on the positives, call out my blessings and change my perspective and have an attitude of gratitude.
i'm reminded of what james said . . . Consider it pure joy, my brothers, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith develops perseverance. Perseverance must finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything.
remembering that, it takes my attention off my problem and helps me focus on my deliverer. my savior, my shelter in the storm.
Sarah Breathnack had the right idea when she said, "When we choose not to focus on what is missing from our lives but are grateful for the abundance that's present....we experience heaven on earth."
heaven on earth. now there's a concept. i will choose not to be a joy-stealer, but a heaven-giver.
not that this will be an easy task. far from it. but it really comes down to energy. negative vs positive. and to be positive, i've got to be plugged in to the right power source. if i am consistently plugged into Jesus, He'll give me the power to face my burdens with joy.
because i am incapable of being a joseph or a paul without Him.