Monday, May 27, 2013

Realist?

I am admittedly, an optimist. My dear husband and eldest son are not. In fact, though they argue against it, they are indeed pessimists.

Why is it that pessimists cannot abide to be called pessimists - but rather claim to be "realists"? I realize I am generalizing but this type of "realism" sucks the life and joy out of me. If I am not careful, I can be pulled into the dramatic negativity all too quickly. (for those that know me I have resigned myself to the reality that I am dramatic - but it is a positive dramatic!)

Here is a Facebook chat that I had with my eldest last week (spelling and grammatical errors left in purposely):

Me - "hello boy of mine. how is your day going?"
Drew - "meh"
Me - "why?"
Drew - "thre is no why."
Me - "? you can't claim a "meh" day without a reason"
Drew - "You of all people shuld know by now that I m not one for reason."
Me - "*sigh* well Mister pessimist then you can't claim to be a "realist" The reality is your day is average ie "fine" - if there is nothing identifiable that causes your day to be below average then it cannot be defined as 'meh' "
Drew - "thats very optimistic reasoning and therefore not real."
Me - "not optimistic at all. Optimism would say without an identifiable cause for a below average day you must define your day as "wonderful", "great", "over-flowing with possibilities"! All spoken with great enthusiasm and even bigger smiles."
Drew - "spoken by an optimist. even worse an optimists view on on a pesimist. it just doesn't work."

Me - "Indeed it does work. You just don't like the fact that my neutrality - ie your day is fine - is realistic."
Drew - "If your nuetral why aren't I?"
Me - "because "meh" isn't neutral it's negative. "woohoo" would be positive (though extremely so). fine is neutral. regardless of your pessimistic outlook I still love you more than life!"

What I found even more interesting, is that moments after this conversation I went on to read this blog post by Ann Voskamp. As I pondered her thoughts, I read this quote and it spoke to me.

"When we fixate on the worst in something, we render ourselves incapable of fixing anything.
But attend to the good in something — and we act towards the best in everything."

This is it - when we focus on the adverse- when our immediate reaction is the extreme negative response to any circumstance, then the situation seems hopeless... too much to bear let alone overcome. The influence on those around can be depressing, suffocating desperation. But this isn't TRUTH.

Romans 15:4-6 "For everything that was written in the past was written to teach us, so that through the endurance taught in the Scriptures and the encouragement they provide we might have hope.
May the God who gives endurance and encouragement give you the same attitude of mind toward each other that Christ Jesus had, so that with one mind and one voice you may glorify the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ."

Romasn 15:13 " May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit."

Psalm 18:1-2 "I love you, Lord, my strength. The Lord is my rock, my fortress and my deliverer;
my God is my rock, in whom I take refuge, my shield and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold.


If I have this hope, how can I choose to react in the negative? to focus on the worst scenario as one without hope?

Even more than this

Romans 8:37 " No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us."
I am not left to my own devices to just "get by" or survive.

and then I read these words:

"You may not be able to picture what you can’t see but only real things fill up space. And the real reality is that your glass is really right full."

and they ring so true the glass is indeed ALWAYS "really right full".

THAT is realism!

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    I am the very blessed wife of my best friend. The humble mother of five precious children. Walking a life-road that is more amazing than I could ever imagine.
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