Glass half full? Glass half empty? We have all used this expression, and been hit over the head with it from time to time.
The statement to be positive has a front and back side here. Just the way we are put together, our hormones, experiences, environment mix us together to form the person we have become. Some people seem to just naturally be positive or negative, but we have become that way because of this complex mix.
The other side is what is happening around us, the good, the bad, the neutral things. And obviously the two work as filters to tint and modify us.
Ministering to Japanese can be a discouraging work. I often remember the discussions with missionaries as they shared how difficult things were. Also, during our home assignments, when we visited churches people would often remind us of how difficult the work was in Japan. I suppose that they had heard from previous missionaries all the negative stories.
A confession. I often can be very negative and even can get depressed. My family can pull out chapters of illustrations! However, in my better states of mind I know that these times don’t advance God’s Kingdom. So I do want to chose to be positive.
In reflecting on our ministry in Japan I can honestly say that God always gave us things for which we could be positive. In spite of the negative things, there was always someone showing interest in the gospel, someone taking baby steps toward Jesus, always some new ministry opportunity.
Let me encourage you (and myself). Be positive. Focus on what God is doing. Hold a thankful heart. You will enjoy the work; those close to you will enjoy you more, and people will better see Jesus.
The cup really is 50.1% full!