Positivity does not come naturally for me. I’m not sure why but truly, it never has. My gut instinct is to fear the worst, to assume the worst, and to think disaster. A simple stomach pain could be a tumor. I headache is certainly an oncoming seizure. That skin tag? Most assuredly cancer.
I rarely voice any of the fears running through my head because, well, I spend a lot of energy most days on not looking crazy. In fact, most people don’t know I have such a negative gene because I work so hard on speaking words that uplift and support and inspire. I try to put sunshine out but the truth is, thinking on the bright side, seeing the positive, and picking up a glass half full are are mighty, mighty efforts for me.
All this being said, with a desire to follow through on my New Year resolution to seek fierce grace still brewing in the depths of my heart, I decided this summer to put some extra effort into positivity. I wasn’t even sure what that looked like when I made the decision but I immediately was tested in living it out.
We’ve had a lot going on in the Lexow house this summer. We moved in May and have been working hard to settle in. There have been bumps. Plumbing bumps, planning bumps, unnamed bumps. Some of the bumps have felt small. Some of the bumps have felt insurmountable. We are still trying to climb over some of them…so much so that they feel less like bumps and more like mountains. So finding the positive, on certain days, has taken a true effort.
Last week I had to text Charlie with a specific piece of news and I started with the age old question, “Do you want the good news or the bad news?” As I unfolded the entire story on my smart phone screen I regaled issue after issue but wrapped up the end with a smiley face and a word of positivity. He replied,”I don’t think any of this is funny.”
Even my own husband was confused by my efforts to see the positive.
As I walked from my bedroom towards my living room my eyes caught a glimmer across the brick floor in the hallway. A tiny rainbow was shimmering there, almost waving to me. I rounded the corner and saw another one, a bigger one. I turned to grab my phone so I could take a picture. Something in me knew I’d need to remember this moment of beauty.
There was no magic in the moment, albeit beautiful. The rainbows were simply fractions of light from the glass on my front door. But I knew right then that God was reminding me that he’s there. Always. And with that true and basic reminder, positivity made so much sense. Thinking positive isn’t about faking a smile or typing smiley words you don’t mean. Positivity is about hope. It’s about knowing that God loves me and has my very best interest at heart every minute of every day. It’s remembering that his plans are for me to prosper; never to cause me harm.
That was a message I needed to hear this week. The news from around the country has been so devastating; so easy to look at with negativity. It’s easy to look at the news and lose hope. But if there has ever been a time for us to find the positive, to look for the good…it’s now. These are the days to remember that Jesus never once promised us this life would be easy. He never said we wouldn’t face trouble. The thing I have to keep reminding myself is that Jesus has faced the worst of the worst already and he’s sitting on the throne in victory. On the days when I feel like all hope, all positive, all chance of good is gone, he sends rainbows to dance across my floor.
A few months ago I might have missed them. I might have been so self absorbed in my own troubles that I tromped around the corner, never to see the light on the brick. I’m working on it though. Fierce grace means loving myself enough to go a little easier, to reach out for hope, and to trust that God loves me. It means looking for rainbows and knowing they’re there, somewhere, as a beacon of love from heaven.