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Wednesday, October 10, 2012

"My day can only get better..."

Keep your heart with all vigilance, for from it flow the springs of life.
Proverbs 4:23 (ESV)


Catawampus. It's a real word, and it helped me clearly discern today's lesson- making a positive declaration. I'd found my rallying cry for the day before 9:00 am. It was "my day can only get better." I thank God for my sense of humor, for the faith He planted firmly within me, and that despite all that's happening in my life right now, I'm bent but not broken. Even when everything suggested that I should just grumble about it and be pissed off, He gave me a spirit of joy.

(Message from the Universe,
it only gets better)
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Walking the dog this morning (I didn't feel like it, but hey, he doesn't care how I feel) I seemed to run into every dog and walker in a 10 mile radius. On another day, I'd have had more energy to keep my dog under control. This morning, he wanted to fight me, pull, draw out every single ounce of energy I didn't even have. One nut had his dog off leash, seeming in my prone-to-be-victimized mind to be provoking me to do something rash, like call the police...we do have a leash law in town, after all, and I'm trying to abide by the law. I turned left at the first dog, and found a moment's peace. Walking along the alternate route, I ran into yet another dog. Third turn, third dog. Four times in about 5 or 6 blocks, I ran into yet another strange dog and walker (the regulars and I all know each other, crossing the street to keep it easy). I was getting a little frustrated. As I traveled the last half block before home, here comes another dog, this one barking and out of control. I was about to break. Suddenly, instead of the grumble, it occurred to me..."my day can only get better."

I came home intent upon telling my beloved about my revelation. He smiled, knowing optimism is my natural orientation. I made my declaration, not only to myself, but to him as well. I was inclined to share. One should share blessings, you know.

I've been wearing my glasses for the past several days due to an eye infection. Since I discovered contact lenses, I almost never wear my glasses anymore, so much so, in fact, that one of my son's closest friends admitted forgetting that I'd ever worn glasses at all. I grabbed a pair and headed out the door.

I noticed when I put them on that the left arm was askew; a little crooked; catawampus (I'll get to that later). I was walking with a friend when out of habit, I took them off. The left arm flew off, into the street, and was promptly run over by a car (my life could be a sitcom). I could've done several things, including cuss or cry (which I did not). I simply slid them into my purse, and kept walking.

Later, while sitting in a meeting, I realized I needed to read something, and couldn't, without glasses. Without missing a beat, I put my broke-down glasses on and kept it moving. Hey, I could still see (keep it moving). I was chatting with a friend about my glasses when she took the pair off her face and put them in my hand. (Message from the Universe, it only gets better).  She said she had several pair, and asked only if they were too strong (they were perfect of course, that's God).

I was telling my daughter about my day; she'd complemented my funky new specs and I described the events of the day, including the catawampus eyepiece I'd worn as a spontaneous lesson in gratitude. When I was little, my dad told stories of the grandfather I did not remember. They often included colorful witticisms; a collection of turned phrases and unique words I was never sure existed anywhere outside our family. The only way to describe my glasses, sitting askew upon my face, one arm gone, was to call them catawampus, a word my dad said my grandpa used. We laughed, and I said I wondered how to spell catawampus. My husband told my daughter to look it up. "It's not a real word," I countered. It was. A real word, I mean. It only got better. I had to apologize to the spirit of my grandpa, of whom I'd always made a little fun. The reality of his wisdom was better than I'd imagined. Better. Like the blessings that spring from a merciful God. A God who, in the midst of my troubles, teaches me to laugh at trials and declare God's blessings in my life. Not just today's blessings, but ones to come. Better ones. Here is even more evidence that I am a cock-eyed (or catawampus) optimist. However, before you dismiss my optimism as nothing more, look further. Matthew Henry's commentary on Proverbs 4:23 says
Attentive hearing the word of God, is a good sign of a work of grace begun in the heart, and a good means of carrying it on. There is in the Word of God a proper remedy for all diseases of the soul. Keep thy heart with all diligence. We must set a strict guard upon our souls; keep our hearts from doing hurt, and getting hurt.
There is precedent for keeping a positive outlook. So, I'm looking ahead, and looking up. No matter what's already come at me, it can only get better. So I will look forward to the promises of God. (Message from the Universe, it only gets better). Divine promises...another reminder that God is good. (and good only gets better)

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