Here’s the thing about optimism. It’s getting old.
This year was hard. Just really terrible. I’ve had rough spots in my life before, but not like this. I questioned everything. My relationships, my family, my life goals, who I was as a person. I felt lost and confused. No amount of happy music or positive thoughts could make me feel better about my situation.
Ever since I was young, I’ve had a positive outlook on life. It’s never been difficult for me to see the bright side of things, probably because I prefer being happy than miserable. I tell myself that things will get better, and eventually they do. But this year I questioned even my own ability to see things as better than they are.
I think a lot of people, myself included, are convinced that every negative emotion has to be paired with a positive one. Maybe it’s not on purpose, but we’ve all thought it at some point in time. Posts on social media that say “Well today was terrible. At least God is in control,” or “People let you down, but God never does.” These things are true, of course. But sometimes I think we play the positive card because we’re afraid to be vulnerable and admit that we’re just hurt. Or angry.
I should mention, that facebook and twitter maybe aren’t the best places to let our your anger. While mini rants can make us feel satisfied, broadcasting our hurt to the world isn’t always the best approach.
But what I noticed is that sometimes, honestly, I just want to be angry and have no one tell me that things will get better. Or tell me that God loves me, even when I don’t feel like anyone else does. Sometimes I want to cry, to feel hurt, and to get angry, because life is hard. Plain and simple, life is difficult. People disappoint us, things don’t go as planned, promises are broken, and we’re left lacking.
I think it’s easy to say ‘There may be pain in the night, but joy comes in the morning’, and tell ourselves we have to suck it up and move on. But joy isn’t something we can so easily have. Happiness, sure. That’s easier to find. But joy comes from trusting that God will bring you out of the hard time you’re going through. Joy comes from finding yourself so fully in God that people and things won’t determine your happiness. I found that the reason I was having such a hard time, was because I was finding myself too much in wordly things. Relationships and things that weren’t bad until I gave them too much weight in my life. When they were taken from me, it revealed just how much of a hold they had on me.
Your situation won’t get better because you get back the things you miss and lack, or because those things are replaced with other things. Life gets better when we trust Jesus with our lives. That he knows better than we do about what we really need.
God understands pain. Psalm 34 says “The lord is near the brokenhearted; He saves those crushed in spirit.” Things take time. It’s not easy to pull yourself together when you’re hurting. But God guarantees that when we feel deserted, he’s close by.
Psalm 27:13-14: “I’m certain that I will see the Lord’s goodness in the land of the living. Wait for the Lord; be courageous and let your heart be strong. Wait for the Lord.”

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *