Finally, beloved, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is pleasing, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence and if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things. Keep on doing the things that you have learned and received and heard and seen in me, and the God of peace will be with you. Philippians 4:8-9 New Revised Standard Version (NRSV)
A Word of Hope
I have sometimes been accused of being a bit of a “Pollyanna”, meaning that I am steadfastly determined to see the best in any situation. Well, I admit it is mostly true. I furthermore, believe it is what the Bible teaches us to do. Plus, it just makes good sense to me.
I once left my purse in a restaurant. My friend and I were miles down the road when I discovered it was missing. We headed back to the restaurant with an interesting conversation. I was sure that the purse would be either where I left it or in the Manager’s safekeeping. My friend said it definitely would not be there. He remembered the people who were seated at the table nearby. According to him, they were sleazy characters who looked like the sort of people who would take the purse and run.
He said his way of thinking was best because it prevented him from being disappointed. I argued that my way left room for everything to turn out just fine without worrying about bad things that never happened.
Arriving at the restaurant, the “sleazy” people greeted us with smiles, and said, “We took your purse to the manager. Just check with her.”
I rest my case.
It turns out this system works well for a lot of things. My newsfeeds inform me of all sorts of evil, vice, and turmoil that inhabit my world. I keep informed, but I do not let these things overwhelm me or keep me from noticing the wonderful blessings and many acts of kindnesses that also surround me.
It is a worthwhile exercise to notice our thoughts and conversations and compare them to those recommended in Philippians 4: 8-9. When we fall short, we need not spend
time criticizing ourselves. We can simply redirect our thoughts and words…”And the God of peace will be with you.”
Beloved Creator God, I am so grateful for the numerous blessings you have lavished upon me and upon the country in which I live. Help me to be always mindful of the love the beauty and the grace that surrounds me every day. Help me to be generous, kind and loving to every person I encounter. May your Spirit live within me and flow through me to my world. Amen
Carole Anne Sarah