I didn’t blog a lot last week. Or do much of anything, for that matter. Aaron was in Colorado all week and I was the single mom of three rowdy boys. One of those boys had the flu (fevers of 103), the baby was teething, and my eldest decided that I’m “the worst mom ever and I don’t like you and I mean those things I said.” Ouch. Then there was some friend drama and some family drama. Don’t even get me started on the rest of the world — between the chaos in Libya, the aftermath of destruction in Japan, perpetual unrest in the Middle East, and the constant threat of terror hanging over everything, I’m about ready to stick my head in the sand and pretend nothing exists beyond the sound of my own steadying heartbeat. Except that I imagine all that sand would make my double ear infection feel even worse than it already does. Drat.
Don’t you just feel that way sometimes? Like the world is every sad and sorry shade of gray imaginable? Like life is a constant parade of frustration and disappointment and bad news? Don’t you just cringe sometimes when the telephone rings? Or when someone gives you that pointed look that lets you know in no uncertain terms that you’ve failed somehow? I do.
But you know what? Not for long…
I’m an eternal optimist. The glass is not only half-full, it’s positively overflowing with possibility. There’s something new and different and unexpected and wonderful on the horizon. There has to be.
I am so sick and tired of the constant barrage of hatred and bitterness and dissatisfaction and manufactured fear that we are inundated with every single day. In our personal lives we’re tired and overworked. Our relationships are broken, our days leave us unfulfilled. And beyond the borders of our four walls we’re defensive and cagey, scared of the world around us and quick to misinterpret everything.
Don’t get me wrong, it’s okay to be sad. I’ve gone through very sad seasons in my life, and I know that my troubles are nothing compared to what some people face. There’s a reason we have counselors and therapists and medication. I even think it’s okay to believe that the world is hard and cruel — for a time. But the sun still shines, sweet friend. Coffee is still hot, the rain soaks the ground, children laugh. A line from one of my favorite songs (Wholly Yours by David Crowder) captures it beautifully: “But a certain sign of grace is this, from a broken earth flowers come up, pushing through the dirt.” And it just so happens that those flowers are pushing up right now just outside my window.
It’s a good life. A beautiful life. A gorgeous world filled with love and wonder and hope and possibility. It’s a creation in the midst of redemption, one small piece at a time. One act of love, one hand reaching out at a time. And on the flip side of every circumstance is a loveliness you would never expect. After my seven-year-old called me a bad mom, he buried his face in my neck and called me mommy. Stories of hope and compassion continue to emerge from the rubble of the earthquake and tsunami in Japan. Though my ears still hurt, I live in a country where I can go down the street and pick up my prescription from a pharmacy I trust. It’s a good life.
Your turn: Is your life a good life? Why or why not? Want to make the journey from pessimism to optimism? My friend Mary DeMuth is discussing this on her blog right now. Head on over and check it out!