In last month’s Spiritual Sunday post, I shared the tools I am using for my devotional time right now. Talked about giving up on a book that left me feeling beaten up rather than uplifted. Have returned to my tried and true fav, Jesus Calling, paired with one of Mary Clewley’s workbooks and listening to Everyday Holy on my morning drives to work. Read more about those books in that post, here.
For Spiritual Sunday, 08.2018, thought I would share one of the prompts from 101 Prayers and Affirmations for Spiritual Wellness by Mary Clewley that got me thinking this week. The theme for the day was negativity and the assignment was “Do not be influenced by negative surroundings.” Here are some of my thoughts written on that subject during this past Wednesday’s quiet time.
Spiritual Sunday, 08.2018
Mary provides a prayer and affirmation each day in this workbook.
Prayer: Father, sometimes I am influenced by the negativity of the people in my life. I begin to see things through a negative light rather than through Your eyes. Blind me from ugly thoughts and help me see the beauty in my life and in the people around me.
Affirmation: I will not take on the negative emotions of those around me today. I see everything through the eyes of God.
Then we were invited to describe the world through the eyes of a loving God. I wrote:
The world through the eyes of a loving God is light and lightness. As my daughter Brennyn would say, like Lisa Frank poster, all unicorns and rainbows.
God sees the good in people but the He also cries for the bad in the world. I remember a very old commercial where an Indian/Native American is surveying trash floating down a stream in the wilderness. And then the camera zooms in and there’s a tear in his eye. So impactful.
I think God can see beyond the trash, negativity, sin, wrong-doing, hate, crime and knows the potential for good and beauty and love in this world and His children. But there’s still a tear in His eye.
How would you describe the world through the eyes of a loving God?
Morning Pages, 08.22.2018
It’s Never Too Late by Julia Cameron is another book I have been reading lately for personal growth and self-improvement. I’ve written more than once about my quest for contentment and happiness since retiring. In my most recent article on the subject, I outlined steps for improving happiness shared in a July article of “O” magazine. Cameron recommends that readers use writing each morning to improve focus and contentment, and calls these daily writings “morning pages’.
After my devotional last Wednesday, I continued thinking about negativity And chose to write about negative versus positive thinking for my morning pages that day.
My Bible study today was about trusting in God and speaking His name when I feel afraid or feel the pull of the enemy. About the impact of negativity and fear and self-doubt on my life. I have done that (just spoken the word “God”) and stopped to utter a prayer a time or two and have felt better, felt a respite, a safe haven come over me.
My Bible study workbook (mentioned above) talked about negativity. I carry self-negativity around with me like a black spot on my heart and soul. I am much more optimistic about the lives and conditions of others; I am hopeful, can see the light at the end of the tunnel, I can be encouraging and positive. I can almost speak into being butterflies, rainbows, flowered meadows and unicorns for others’ situations and lives when they are experiencing sadness or despair. But when I have expectations about things in my own life, it is often the opposite. Doom and gloom.
But my sister Valerie and I were talking about that. When time and time again, the craziest, often most unlikely things happen, you begin to anticipate the worst. Sometimes while still hanging onto hope for the best. Sadly, always waiting for that other shoe to drop.
I am reminded of a book I read about 10 years ago. One I might need to pull off the shelf and revisit.
The Secret by Rhonda Byrne. Are you familiar with it? Byrne writes about the law of attraction. The premise that we attract negative or positive into our lives through our expectations. So, when I expect the other shoe to drop (as it has a lot of my adult life), the other shoe is surely going to drop.
Changing My Mindset
As I continue to work on my happiness and contentment, I am going to improve my outlook. Instead of holding my breath all of the time and expecting the worst, I am going to try to improve that mindset. If I can be optimistic and encouraging about the situations in others’ lives, surely I can turn that inward on myself! Right? And maybe I am not exactly pessimistic as much as I am a realist. In fact, took at little online quiz and this was my result.
The Gentle Pragmatist
You don’t believe in dreaming big, you’d rather live quietly, practically, and well rather than shoot for the stars. You live a balanced life, you work hard, but you know when it’s time to step back and loosen up a bit. It’s very difficult to disappoint you, as you generally take life as it comes. You’re easy-going, level-headed, and a very pleasant person to be around. Your calm, content energy draws others to you like a magnet.
But would like to bump that up to optimist! Going to work on being more positive.
This Month’s Little Miracles and Gratitude
- Grateful for prayer and the ability to pray
- Money to take our kitties to the vet
- For 2 paydays in one week
- Answered prayers – I am understanding work better
- Butterflies at McKelligon Canyon make me feel like my father is close
- My tech-savvy Prince
- Our hot tub and a glass of wine
- Potato soup and homemade bread
- Talking to my grandbabes
- Sunset colors
Are you an optimist, pessimist or realist? Take the quiz here to find out. How do you feel about the theory of the law of attraction? Do we make our own luck? What are you thankful for this month?
Thank you for visiting. Hope your Sunday was energizing and refreshing. Have a perfect last week of August.
Hugs and kisses,