Saturday, April 1, 2017

Love Conquers All

Yesterday, I started out with a spring in my step and joy in my heart, celebrating my great big, wonderful God who confounds me with His unfathomable love for me. I spoke into my day blessings and peace as I continued with thanksgiving to my Lord for His goodness to me.

That's the way my day started. Free. Thankful. Faith-filled. Joyful. Then entered "Cruella Deville" (the mean gal from 101 Dalmatians), and my Wonderland kind-of-day, could have easily become a cloudy, doom-filled day -- if I let her negativity, gloom and despair become my reality, too. Yes, I had to suck it up and rather than return her unhappiness with equal dismay and unhappiness, I put on my happy face and oozed with love that could only come from God's love within me.

Just before encountering this gal, we had had our family devotions and I had the opportunity to tell the family how life's stuff, and my reaction to it, has taught me so many lessons. At 68, I've had plenty of time to learn to get it right....and I'm still learning. What I know are the consequences, and the blessings, that can come from how I conduct myself on a daily basis. Don't get me wrong -- I haven't arrived, but thanks be to God, I'm way further down the road in learning my lessons well, than before. I've learned that our mind, mouth, moods and attitudes are all intricately connected. First we think, and then our thoughts turn into words that we speak, and the two of them together turn into good or bad moods and attitudes.

For years, I paid no attention to what I was thinking, and I didn’t make the connection between my thoughts and the rest of my life. But God has taught me many things from His Word about the “mind connection” since those early days. Let's look at how we can deal with the tough circumstances and tough "Cruellas" in our lives.

~ We Can Choose How We Think and React -- although we don’t always have the power to change every unpleasant circumstance or "Cruella" that enters our lives, we do have the power to change our outlook. I've found if we look at it in a hopeful, faith-filled way, we can watch God work all things out for our good. (Romans 8:28).

~ We Can Think Positive Things On Purpose -- Good thing I started my day, yesterday, with happy, positive, and grateful thoughts, because that's how I was able to confront negativity with positivity. I chose to think "She must have circumstances going on in her life that are causing her to act this way. Maybe she is hurting. Maybe she needs a friend."

~ With God's help, we can approach situations and people with a consistent good attitude no matter what those circumstances are.

The end of my "Cruella DeVille" story is a good one. For one thing, I stopped thinking of her as "Cruella" (that was stinking thinking to even see her that way -- Lord, please forgive me). Because I brought sunshine to her cloudy day and because I responded with gentleness, kindness, tenderness and "I'm sorry you feel this way. I want to help you in every way I can. Please let me", she became a kinder version of her former self. I'm telling you...."God's love expressed in human form through you and me....has the potential to change someone, some group of people and even our world!" Love conquers all.