---------------I love Pamela Steinke's book -- 'Good Morning... God'. Grow in the faith - We don't only learn this in living life with all of its struggles but we also must seek to learn it from good people and good books. After all God uses a diversity of tools to make us learn about Him or know Him better.
Here's a snippet from that book.....
God: "Yes, dwell much upon the positives! Let the good things of life saturate your mind; think much about them and do not give thought to the negative. Always think upon the positive. Concentrate upon each blessing until you are filled with joy! Always you have concentrated most upon the negatives of life. Now it is time to learn to fill your thoughts with the good. You are learning to wear the armor of God."
This, I believe, is the formula to how life can be better lived. I have learned that much through the ups and down of my speckled life. Speckled.. is an understatement. If life were a face it would have been one with tons of pimples, acne, freckles, psoriasis, allergies... name anything ugly you wouldn't want on a perceived pretty face... and it's there on THAT face! That was life for me... a bundle of 'I don't need you-I don't want you-I don't like you-but you're here' ugly stuff. It's like some horrendous mean ogre (with his ugly face of course!) is so obsessed in making my life miserable. I guessed that he too must have read what we have read about 'misery loving company'... and was hell-bent literally on pursuing it with me!
But amazingly it were those same things which gave me my lessons in faith, courage, hope, and positivity. Somebody up there makes a mighty good teacher! You see I had to grow up fast, learn fast but He made sure that I did it the right way. He gently steered me into learning to see with my eyes, mind, and heart the wonderful positive things in the world ... and that it exists even in a speckled freckled life.
But if you're looking for or expecting positivity wrapped in wondrous drama with cymbals and drums making a heavenly noise, nope it's not always that way. Sometimes it's that silent courage you feel in the face of strife which pushes you forward a brave step at a time. Sometimes it's simply a warm sun and a gentle breeze which in some marvelous way lifts the worrisome lines off your weary face. Sometimes it's the chirping of a bird outside your window atop tree branches which opens up your eyes to a lovely glorious day. And sometimes it's the raindrops falling from gray skies which in a precious fleeting moment reminds you that the sun will come out later but it surely will.
Because you know in your heart that you can make it yet and that Somebody up there is keeping watch making sure that you'll be okay. And the joy coming out of that is way beyond measure! Try it to believe it.
Here's the bible reference found in that same book. (By the say, thanks Pamela Steinke. I love your book.)
New International Version (NIV)
8 Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things.
May the blessings of the Lenten season pour out upon you and your homes.