Sunday, January 27, 2008
I have been mulling over 11-12, now 13-14 the last 3 weeks.
In 11, it talks about differences, seek good counsel and be the person God meant you to be. 12 speaks to the enemy's target being the arena of your thoughts, instead we are to focus on the positive, transforming our lives, not allowing anyone else on the playground to mess with God's plan.
I sold Home Interiors for a while, and just loved it, the positive training and outlook have been a large part of my life. Mary Crowley wrote a book, "God didn't take time to make a Nobody" that has just meant so much to me. Her attitude is the same: Look at the bright side, don't focus on the darker, move on, focus, focus, focus. A few years ago I worked close by a co-worker who could not do anything but focus on the negative. After a very short time, I realized that constant battering on my positive thinking was affecting my life at work, at home, everywhere. Life for this co-worker began by their having to get out of bed in the morning, and drag to work. From the moment of arrival, it was negative this, and negative that. I began to feel so oppressed that I dreaded going to work. I was able to move away to a different work section, but lunch times and break times were the same. I began to find ways to go to another building, another area, etc, to remove myself from the side-effects of the constant battle to stay positive in the darkness of their continual battle. I thought that God had allowed me to sit close to the person to help them look at the positive side of life, but in thinking back, the continual negativity wore away at my positive side. I think we all have to work at staying positive, and sometimes having to be in such close relationship with one who doesn't have a positive outlook can really have long lasting consequences. I look at that time, and wonder if there was something I could have done differently to keep from being dragged down, or to reach out differently.
It is said that you should never jump into the water with a drowning person, because they will drag you down. You should instead throw them a life line. If I had known about Joel's book then, I would have been able to recommend it, and possibly gotten some light in a dark tunnel. I really like what he has to say about focusing on the positive. The last sentences of Chpt. 12: ...start thinking God's thoughts. God's thoughts will fill you with faith and hope and victory. God's thoughts will build you up and encourage you. They will give you the strength you need to keep on keeping on. God's thoughts will give you that can-do mentality.
In Chapter 13, "God made you, and He has programmed you for victory." Recently, I talked to a friend who said "I grew up in such dire circumstances, but God lifted me out of that mire, and I no longer have to drag it around with me, rolling it every once in a while, to remind myself." He has put his past behind him. It doesn't mean it still doesn't show up as a nail hole everyonce in a while, but he has moved on, made of himself a Godly man, with God's help. If he had focused on his negative, he wouldn't be where he is today, a respected pastor, with a wonderful Godly family, friends who respect him, a job where he can minister to others. As mentioned in "Your Best Life," this man asked God to work in him, and through him, with an attitude of faith. As Frank mentions, he didn't look at the mountain, and say, "Oh, woe is me." He asked God to look at the mountain and help him with it, either move it, or allow him to climb it.
I want that attitude to stay with me... to not see the mountain as too big to move, but how best to get it to move, with God's help and direction. FROG is a term another friend uses a lot, he once kept miniature frogs on his desk, swimming in a water filled planter. Fully Relying On God.
I want that to be real in my own life.