July 11, 2015

Optimism Despite the Circumstances

I don’t know about you, but MY life is rarely perfect.  I seem to come up against continual roadblocks.

More often than not, my challenges resemble the huge rock in the middle of the road pictured above rather than dainty little road signs that can be circumvented.  A driver faced with such herculean stones has only two choices:  have an angry fit, or be resigned to searching out a less convenient route.

We always have a choice of optimism or pessimism. I have seen unhappy individuals who have few challenges as well as happy individuals who are practically bedridden. It’s all in the attitude.


She’s a friend who lives in an area currently pounded by forest fires. In fact, they have come to within a mile of her house. The fires were started by a few carelessly dropped cigarettes.

At this time, the fires are raging out of control.  The government hasn’t taken the proper measures to stop them. Janet knows many angry people who have lost homes and businesses. However, she refuses to give in to despondency. She is keeping a good attitude.

Joyce Meyer

This world-renowned Bible teacher illustrates the importance of one’s outlook with a cute story. I will paraphrase it:

There were two brothers. One was a pessimist and one was an optimist. The parents wanted to adjust their children’s attitude. A therapist suggested that the parents give the negative child a top-of-the-line racing bicycle for Christmas. He also told them to give the optimistic child some horse manure. The mother and father agreed.
The results were unexpected. When the sad boy saw the bicycle, he frowned and complained that he’d probably fall and break his leg. Next, the joyful boy opened his box of manure. He jumped up and ran toward the front door screaming “With this much poop, there’s got to be a horse out there somewhere!”
Hope is a Mindset

Optimism is a conscious choice. It’s not about circumstances. It’s a perpetual decision to rise above unfair situations. We often cannot control trauma, but we CAN control our reaction to it.

Hope can be defined as a confident, joyful expectation. It is totally unrelated to feelings, or circumstances. Think about it: If our lives were perfect, why would we need hope in the first place? We wouldn’t. Perfection doesn’t require either hope or faith because it doesn’t include negativity.

My Conclusion

Adversity is a part of everyone’s life.  Some people have more of it than others. Each individual chooses their own reaction to their personal trials. Optimism will lead to feelings of stability and joy.  Pity parties will lead to more negativity.

Are you patiently waiting for your pile of manure to lead you to a horse?

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