Usually, I walk around full of optimism and enthusiasm for life. The glass for me is half full, or even if it's empty, the milk is in the fridge, ready to fill the glass again. Most people who know me feel that I fill the room with energy and excitement. Lately though, it seems like life has tiptoed up from behind me, reached around, and smacked me upside the head.
Mostly, in life, when we have horrible things happen to us, those happenings are of our own making. We make choices, but we don't get to choose our consequences. Or rather, we choose our consequences by making the very first choice. However, other times, bad things just happen, and we have no control over them. These times are our refiners' fire. We only grow through hard times.
I have been teaching an Old Testament class this year, and the story of Joseph comes to mind. Joseph was a good kid. He never made bad choices, and his brothers made all sorts of stupid decisions. His brothers were jealous of him, so they sold him into slavery. Joseph's choices didn't cause it, life slapped him in the face. Joseph's life was one slap after another even though he worked hard to be honest and stay out of trouble. Even though his life was hard, he came through it with flying colors. He was able to save his family even though they had tried to kill him.
Right now, I'm out of stride. My optimism has been slipping, and problems, not of my own making, are happening to me. I can't seem to see the joy in some of the little things. The big problems are staring me in the face and blocking my view, but it's going to become a goal for the next little while for me to walk tall and keep an eye out for the small, happy things. They're there. I just need to find them again.
This post is part of the Hump Day Hmm over at Julie's blog