Weekly Sabbath Survey
Cup Running Over — 12-3-16
Many people see their life as a series of bad events. The truth, of course, is everybody’s life has had bad things. But in between the bad, many good things happened, too!. So, I prefer to see life as a series of good events!. We actually get to choose which life we have by becoming focused one way or the other. We get to choose which memories we take with us everywhere we go. It’s as simple as the glass half full—or not–concept. We can CHOOSE our theme song: “If it weren’t for bad luck I’d have no luck at all” or “I am blessed, I am blessed. Every day that I live I am blessed.” Just pick one!
How does a person maintain the truth that they have lived a wonderful productive life, when both their pedigree and track record is pock marked with failures and sins like the stop sign on the corner where two kids just got BB guns for Christmas? I choose to remember and cherish the good things. And of course the bad is not entirely forgotten, but I can tuck those away and only think about them if I want to. They are put into a corner of the attic of my mind. Sometimes God’s little creatures come along and take notice of old things in the attic. The next time we take it out for a look, it may be unrecognizable as the painfully hideous event it was so long ago. It has become a moldy, tattered old afterthought. It can’t cause worry or hurt anymore.
Our personality notwithstanding, with the Lord’s help even a real pessimist can be optimistic. If we savor and think on the good things God has done for us, we become thankful. If we cannot be thankful for what we have, we stay fearful that it may not be enough, and the pessimism remains. It really is a choice.
There’s a story in the Bible about a time when the Lord sent a drought/famine in Israel. Hard times. Elijah was sent by God to a stream of good water and the Lord sent ravens to bring him food every morning and evening. But as the drought persisted, eventually the stream dried up. The Lord said, “Go to the village of Zarephath where I have chosen a widow to give you room and board.” When he got to the village, he found the widow and asked her if she could give him water and some bread. She said, “I have nothing baked and all the fixings I have is a handful of flour and a little olive oil in a jug. I have gotten two sticks of wood so I can cook what I have for myself and my son. After we have eaten it, we will die.” This woman, with good cause, was a big time more-than-half-empty person.
In that time, the prophets wore distinctive “robes” that identified them, so this woman might not have known exactly who Elijah was, but she knew what he was. The prophets were God’s spokesmen. He told her to go and do what she said but first take a little of her supply and make a small loaf for him, then she could make for herself and her son. Then he prophesied: For this is what The Lord the God of Israel says, “The pot of flour will not be used up, and there will not fail to be oil in the jug until the day The Lord sends rain down on the land.” You can guess the rest. She obeyed and the Lord God blessed them. [1 Kings 17]
It takes real faith/trust to see life as more good than bad. As a child, I always trusted my parents. I never worried if I would have enough to eat, or new school clothes, or whatever else I needed. My needs were always met. Sometimes it wasn’t too fancy or expensive, but I had all I needed and more. I want to trust God that very same way, being pretty sure that this Father in Heaven is even more trustworthy than my earthly parents. That kind of faith made Job say, “Even if He kills me, I will still trust Him.”
The Lord is my Shepherd; I shall not want for anything. He finds me a resting place near clear streams of water. He restores my soul. He leads me to righteousness and through the valley of extreme danger. I do not fear evil, because He is with me. He prepares a feast for me in the sight of my enemies. He pours His Holy Spirit upon me. My cup runs over. Surely goodness and mercy will follow me every day of my life and I will live in eternity in the Lord’s House. Psalm 23
Charlene Reams Manning, Believer in the Lord Jesus Messiah
Copyright July 2016
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