Notice the Good.
I was taking down all the Christmas decorations the other day (don’t judge) and I decided to move the game table. It a solid table, round on the top and a pedestal base. I decided to scoot (this an official semi-professional term for us rearranging gals, you know who you are) the table across the floor by myself. The round top separated from the base and fell sideways. I held it while I yelled for youngest son and all the while thought, everything is going to slide off the table and break (yes, I left the stuff on the table!) and my back is going to snap in two and quickly righted my thoughts, it’s okay, if everything falls on the floor and breaks, it’s not the end of the world and I am strong, I can do this….
Then..a miracle occurred. Son Rafal appeared in seconds and righted the table.
Some of have brains stuck in the negative. Call it a negative bent. Call it early childhood trauma. Call it whatever label you wish, but it is yesterday’s suppositions effect today’s decisions unless you take the time to change them.
When my husband and I adopted four children from hard places, It was evident immediately that everything was stated in negative terms.” No” was a prominent word in their vocabulary. I need to help them see the world through a more positive lens. Unfortunately that meant changing my vision prescription first. And living in a minute by minute struggle with learning delays, developmental delays, I had to pull my self out of the pit of the present circumstances. Or look above them, around them, more closely at them to see the good. If a child crumpled four math papers out of frustration, What was the good thing? He did number five?
Gazing out the window at sunsets and sitting by the fireside with a hot cup of tea while I read aloud was a circumstance I created. Planning good things doesn’t mean there will be no opposition. There will probably be opposition, but that doesn’t negate the good unless I let it. And sometimes I do.
“He is hogging the blanket”
“I wanted to sit there.”
“This part is boring”
“Why can’t I have three cookies?”
Those sorts of things will be said.I cannot ignore them, but I can rise above them. Notice the good. The good is the seed planted. The time spent together. No the moment isn’t perfect now, but the memory will be.
Three things I need to remember to change my perspective: I need to change the lens I view my life through….
1. God is good.
And He said to him, Why do you ask Me about the perfectly and essentially good? There is only One Who is good [perfectly and essentially]—God. If you would enter into the Life, you must continually keep the commandments.-Matthew 19:17
If nothing else seems good at the moment- the kids are fighting, the house is a mess, the bills are due and the bank account is overdrawn, remember God is good. He is the one who is perfectly and essentially good. Focus on Him. Focus on His goodness. Confess His goodness because the attributes that we magnify in Him, praise in Him, we will seen in our lives.
“A man can no more diminish God’s glory by refusing to worship Him than a lunatic can put out the sun by scribbling the word ‘darkness’ on the walls of his cell.”
― C.S. Lewis, The Problem of Pain
So let us not be the lunatic in the cell scribbling the word ‘darkness’ on the pages of our lives. Let us instead be the ones who glorify God by noticing and speaking His goodness lest the rocks rise up and praise Him. He is good. He gave me the children I have as a good gift whether they are behaving badly or not. He gave me the Gods-sized dream to adopt and then He brought it to pass. It was His good work.
2. He gives good things
Every good gift and every perfect (free, large, full) gift is from above; it comes down from the Father of all [that gives] light, in [the shining of] Whom there can be no variation [rising or setting] or shadow cast by His turning [as in an eclipse].-James 1:17
My children are a good and perfect gift. My life is a good and perfect gift. Being part of the family of God is a good and perfect gift. Having an eternal home with benefits that start here on earth is a good and perfect gift. The creation that tells me of the goodness of God is a good and perfect gift.
And God saw everything that He had made, and behold, it was very good (suitable, pleasant) and He approved it completely. And there was evening and there was morning, a sixth day. Genesis 1:31
Everything that He had made was very good. He approved of it completely. He approves of you completely. He approves of your children completely. It is good.
3. He works all things together for good.
We are assured and know that [God being a partner in their labor] all things work together and are [fitting into a plan] for good to and for those who love God and are called according to [His] design and purpose.- Romans 8:28
He works. We labor. He is our partner in this labor. Noticing the good takes work. Nothing that is worth achieving is easy. The best work I have ever done is raising children. The hardest work I have ever done is raising children.
Work is not man’s punishment. It is his reward and his strength and his pleasure.
Linking up with these lovely ladies today: Holley Gerth and Kristin Hill Taylor! Join us!