The way I see it, life itself is a mixture of good and bad and we can
choose which side we will "major" on..we can make long gloomy lists of
the un-pleasantries of life and soon we would be drowning and wallowing
in self-pity. OR, we can CHOOSE to look on the good things that we have
been blessed with and soon our lists would be so long that we would be
walking and flooded in sunshine. Have you ever thought of that
captivating word..BITTERSWEET?? That's what life is, if we are in the
Lord.. Sure, there are the bitter dregs of pain, disappointment,
disillusionment, grief, etc. but on the other side there is so, so much
sweetness that it just outweighs the bitter, like bittersweet chocolate.
The faint hint of bitterness enhances the delicious sweetness that melts
on the tongue.
We can keep stirring up the ugly dregs of memories and thoughts and "bad
stuff" till we have a permanent bitter taste in our mouth that just
turns us sour and unpleasant to be around...we get to the place where we
don't even like ourselves.
But when we give it all..our entire life with it's ups and downs, to
Jesus, He has a wonderful way of applying "Heavenly memory loss" ..I
call it God's anaesthesia ..and pretty soon we forget all about it,
even forgetting the circumstances and names and faces of people who have
caused us much pain and trouble. I know we can't just hide our heads in
the sand and deny that life has no trials, but we can treat them as
temporary and not a permanent , crippling disease of the spirit. We all
have our down days but we don't have to set up housekeeping there. My
mother used to have so many funny expressions that I still cherish
because they were so descriptive. When she didn't feel good she would
laugh and say, "I feel like digging a hole and crawling in and pulling
the dirt in after me.".. There are some people who, if you ask them the
casual question. " How are you feeling?" will tell you, and tell you,
and tell you and... I don't want to be like that. I hope I can accept
the bitterness of life with God's grace and a positive attitude and
belief that tomorrow will come, the sun will shine, the birds will sing.
Above all that, no matter what happens here in this Life, I am not
I have been blessed with family and friends who truly love and care for
me. That makes me rich beyond belief. And
most blessed of all, I have a Savior Who is constantly with me, bearing
my burdens, giving me strength and comfort and yes, even joy, in the
bitter days. And the sweetness of that cup FAR outweighs the bitter
dregs in the cup Satan would have me drink.
We have an Example. In Hebrews 12:2 we find these words."Looking unto
Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith; Who for the JOY THAT WAS
SET BEFORE HIM , endured the cross , despising the shame..". We learn
from Him to look beyond..beyond the now toward whatever He has set
before us. It will be joy..He said so. He looked beyond Gethsemane and
Calvary to the Joy set before him, when He would be seated at His
Father's right hand in Glory, and just before He returned to that
Glory, He spoke of the gift of His joy to His beloved disciples...'that
your JOY might be FULL." And there is that beautiful passage in 1Peter 1:8,
the promise of " joy unspeakable and full of glory."
This is how we can endure Life's discomforts and griefs.We learn from
the Master to "look beyond."
Note: Some passing thoughts that came to me after a friend commented on
my positive attitude and joy in life on the occasion of my 80th
©Copyright Ruthrmartin.April 2006