It seems like the Internet now focuses so much on negativity:
Cardiologists say avoid this food . . . .
Movie Star denies hiding millions in secret Swiss bank accounts . . . .
When did Obama become a Republican?
You get the drift. The other spots on the news websites are filled with rumors about celebrities–who’s dying, who’s cheating, who’s raising kittens–the whole nine yards.
At least I no longer have to sneak a peak at the tabloids in the supermarket.
You’re right, Steve: There is a lot of negativity and pessimism all around us vying for and seeking our attention. And there’s reason for it. Believe it or not, consciously or subconsciously, we’re like Mikey: “We like it”–and we’re attracted to it. We like “bad news.” Otherwise, the second we saw a word like “wallowing” in the title we’d turning away from it.
For most of us, it takes all our lives to understand it’s not necessary to understand everything. Our quest for certainty blocks our search for self-meaning, because I believe it is uncertainty that is the very condition to impel us to unfold our introspection, creativity, and personal and professional fulfillment. We realize at least three significant things: 1) We receive a great deal more from life, living, being and doing than we give; 2) It is only with gratitude that our life becomes truly rich; and 3) It’s not anyone else’s job to love us, that’s our job. When seeking affirmation, we are reminded to be kinder to ourselves, to embrace the God-given gifts we have, and to acknowledge the contributions we make.
Ultimately we lead ourselves to achieve self-respect, self-knowledge, self-
critique, self-correction, self-sufficiency and positive nature. Yes, that negative and pessimistic landscape is still there around us, but we see it with NEW EYES.
Along those same lines (and I may have said this before) many of Jesus’ messages were implicit rather than explicit. He was both divinely wise, but also street-smart. He told his followers that when asked to carry a load for a mile they should carry it two. Apparently, Roman soldiers could compel a subject to carry their pack for a mile–but no further. By carrying it two miles, the soldier was now at a disadvantage.
Perhaps the best example was when the masses needed to be fed. He did not say, “I will feed them,” but asked his disciples, “What do you have.” He blesses the loaves and fishes but expected the disciples to both distribute the food and clean up afterward. I believe that today, He expects us to do the work and now, just as then, He will bless good works, allowing us to do more than we ever thought possible.
Don’t be surprised if this thought shows up as a blog in the not-too-distant future.