The Glass is Half Full

Pessimism and negativity are known well in my life.  Reading the posts here can prove that to you the reader.  I needed to go to certain difficult places and be "negative" for my own well-being and healing, but I can see that there must be a time to pass into a place of healing, of acknowledgment of the good, the victories, the corners of my life that hold those wonderful, helpful and life-giving times and people and things that rightfully deserve notice.  Full notice and gratitude given because I want to give the attention, because I am ready.   

These two places, negativity and pessimism, have been faithful in standing their ground wherever there was light and hope peeking through my dark times like sun rays gleaming through the cracks of clouds threatening to burst the cloud altogether.  I have let these two areas, needful at times, simply dominate too much of my life.  So, there, I am done acknowledging that fact.  I refuse to live in guilt or beat myself up into oblivion like I have so much in the past.

I see it now.  So there. 

So.  I want to live a half full instead of half empty kind of life.  And may I say I do believe there is a huge difference between suffering, hurt and pain and pessimism and negativity.  A huge difference.  We should not suppress our healing and the forms it takes and the road it travels down.  Feeling our pain, our suffering fully and properly can bring us to a better place in life.  A life of dealing with our hearts and healing instead of ignoring the pain will bring us to a place where we can thrive and brushing the pain off or setting it aside all while it festers under false smiles and faint hearts will inhibit us in moving forward with others and ourselves.

But I do desire to enjoy this life more, to see what is good and noticing it regularly.  I am not doing that right now.  But I will in this moment decide to live a half full kind of life.  It's a finger snap change initially isn't it.  It gets much harder after the first minute, doesn't it?  But truly, I realize that my four year old who is screaming, thank God, is still breathing.  I realize that the rain which ruined our plans for the day have watered and provided so much beauty to the earth.  I realize that while I lack certain physical things I need right now, there is so much that has already been given to us in abundance, over abundance.

The glass is most definitely half full.  It was half full all along and I just didn't notice it.  Or at least I didn't notice it enough.  But when you are thirsty you notice a half full glass of water so much more.  If the waitress poured your glass half full of water or tea or whatever, you'd look at her funny, you'd ask her to please fill it up.  But had you been on a long journey in the desert and walked in and sat at the same table and the waitress filled your cup half full, you would drink fast and furious and feel so satisfied and delighted by the relief, by what was provided.  And in that sheer gratitude, the waitress pours more and more until you are fully satisfied of thirst.

God does that, I think.  Staying focused on that half full glass with gratitude yields more in Him.  He notices that and blesses your gratefulness.  He blesses your mind set.  Here's to you and a half full kind of life. 

Patriotism Gone Amuck

I consider myself a patriot.  I love my country.  I pretty much wouldn't want to live anywhere else if I had the choice.  I realize that America has had its horrendous growing pains since its birth some 236 years ago.  I also equally realize that some men on their true fight for freedom died for the life that I am able to enjoy in this country currently.  Men and women readily join up with the American military industrial complex on all levels in their own fight to supposedly preserve freedom or that is what we are told constantly.  I don't doubt their loyalty or devotion to their cause for one minute, but it is what I believe to be a cause blurred with confusion for me.

Being a constant supporter of our American military and all that it does or claims to do is as "American" as apple pie and baseball for many people in this country.  That is a definitive stance that I cannot agree with and do not fully understand and haven't for some time.  I think we should be tough and stand ready to fight for our communities and families whenever the time comes that we are truly threatened face to face.  I don't want my kids to be afraid of the work it would take or be afraid to stand up and fight if they have to, warding off predators of all kinds coming against them and their country, because that's what we will need if a true war every steps a foot in our direction.  We would all have to work together out of sheer desperation and necessity if some country started dropping bombs on us.  That mentality I am 100 percent in agreement with and will teach my children to defend if necessary what or whom needs to be defended.

Policing the world though, I believe, is not what I think this country set out to do in founding itself.  Also, the repetitive speech given to us that every war that is fought or every conflict we find ourselves in or create for ourselves is somehow always a fight to preserve our country's current freedom.  That is a lie and many buy that lie daily.  I mean, how can you compare the Revolutionary War with the Vietnam War in this idea of preservation of freedom.  There is no comparison.  In one war many died to create a nation in which they were finally free from monarchs.  In the other war many innocent lives were stolen from this earth to create a more stable nation for someone else.  Sounds noble enough, but I see the former as a battle we were not meant to fight, that among many others.

I support our troops.  Many join the ranks believing the lie they have been fed, willing to take any order they are given, again, to preserve freedom.  I feel that the very soldiers themselves are lied to many times with promises, raises, benefits and bonuses to join up based on emotion in the moment.  Though I can't pretend to know the heart of every soldier, I think most truly have an honorable spirit and I do not fault them for one minute for our government's decisions or intentions.

Yes, indeed, I am all for patriotism, but I can see truly that freedom comes from God before it comes or is preserved by any man and it is every man and every woman's duty to preserve their own freedom and be thankful to God for that freedom.  And the true focus on this earth should be to see the differences in others, in other countries and work through these difficulties peacefully as much as lies within us to do.

I am completely moved by the recent story of Aung San Suu Kyi.  Here is a woman who has fought for democracy in her country of Burma, currently Myanmar, with peacefully staged protests for decades and she is now a new leader in her own government affecting change despite her long battle, the constant threats against her life, her arrests and the opposition she faced.  She was a peacemaker.  She wanted to work through the disagreements and difficulties even if it cost her own life in the process.  That is truly noble, not dropping bombs on innocent people to kill a few supposed bad guys hiding in the trees.

And again, I'll say I am certainly patriotic, but when it runs amuck like a leaderless army without a good partner like peace holding its hand then we are headed for much trouble.