It's Not How You See It, It's How You Drink It.
“A pessimist sees the difficulty in every opportunity, the optimist see the opportunity in every difficulty.” -Winston Churchill
Through the years I have seen my share of adversity. Some of them were because of my bad decisions, but some were beyond my control. Adversity has a way of shaping us through our response. I have made it my goal to find the good or opportunity in every situation.
Paul writes in Colossians 3:2 to keep our minds on things above. I believe it's the Spirit that allows us to see the opportunity in every situation. This is keeping our minds on things above. We approach every situation with spiritual insight, a renewed mind.
I have worked with both the pessimist and the optimist. I enjoyed working with the optimist the most. The optimist looks for God's leading and direction in the darkest of situations. Paul writes again in Ephesians 5:16 to make the most of every opportunity, because the days are evil. There are and will be evil days. It's our job as Christians to shine our light into that darkness.
We do this by looking for the opportunities in difficulties. It has amazed me how each opportunity is connected. One opportunity will lead to another and another. We also have the freedom to choose the opposite, despair. Choosing to find the opportunity in difficulties frees us from the burdens of the past. Despair only piles higher and higher, until we resemble a cornered animal with madness in our eyes. This not only does emotional damage, it can cause physical pain as well. We become paranoid and seek vices that numb the pain. This only leads to more difficulties and ultimately death.
I am reminded of the crazed men who meet Jesus in Matthew 8:28-34 (See also Mark 5:1-20 & Luke 8:26-29). They are violent, it says, and no one was able to pass that way.
They also lived in the tombs, the place of death. The men are plagued with demons. In Luke's account the demons say their name is Legion, seems to identify the quantity of demons the man carried around. Many times they overtake the men requiring them to be chained and put under guard. They break the chains and continue on their rampage.
Jesus casts the demons into pigs. Immediately the herd of pigs run screaming into the water and drown. These demons were driving these men to death. I believe these were literal demons, but I want to make a figurative connection to the "demons" in our lives. These are despair created by our difficulties. They compound and grow over time until we are living in death and lashing out at anyone who passes by. This is the old way of thinking. The "dog eat dog" mentality of "survival of the fittest".
We must set our minds on things above, seize every opportunity, and allow the Spirit to unveil His fruit in us. Remain in the Spirit and He will remain in you (John 15:4).
In His service and yours,