Are you a pessimist or an optimist? How do you normally look at things? Do you tend to look at life with a positive outlook or do you lean toward the negative? When looking at the proverbial glass, do you tend to see the glass half full or half empty?
This tendency might be partially due to our nature and personality but I think we can have a lot of control over this. With practice we can become a more positive person. We have control over very few things but we can control our mindset. Victor Frankl, the concentration camp survivor, once said, “Everything can be taken from a man except one thing: To choose one’s attitude in any set of circumstances.”
After all, the Bible tells us “As a man thinks in his heart, so is he.” (Proverbs 23:7)
Choosing our attitude. There are many Biblical examples on which we can draw. Think about Paul. He most certainly looked on the brighter side of things. There are a few places in Scripture where he told us about some of his struggles and his reaction.
2 Corinthians 4:8 and following is one such place. Make the following notations. Paul said he was…
Hard-pressed but not crushed
Perplexed but not in despair
Persecuted but not forsaken
Struck down but not destroyed
As we consider Paul’s life we must admit it would have been easy for Paul to get down. It would have been easy to look at the glass half empty. But not Paul. He is a great example.
Let us work on developing a more positive outlook. Our prayer life might be a good place to start. As we pray let us consider the following taken from a personal Bible study long ago.
In youth, let us thank God for the brightness and prospect of life beckoning one to the future.
In age, let us thank God that life has been extended so long.
In health, let us thank God for the greatest of physical blessings.
In illness, let us thank God for wise physicians, kind nurses and the tender concern of loved ones.
In wealth, let us thank God for having been made the steward of such large accounts.
In poverty, let us thank God for Him, who though He was rich became poor that He might make many rich, and for His special promise, “Blessed are the poor.”
In the event of great loss, let us thank God for blessings he is yet permitted to retain.
You see it really does depend on how we look at things. As much as is possible, let us thank GOD for the blessings of life and let us look at the glass half full.