Leadership expert John Maxwell tells the story of a boy who was playing with his bat and ball. He announced to his mom, who was watching, “I’m the greatest hitter in all of baseball!” He then tossed the ball up in the air, swung with his bat, and missed.
“Strike one!” he said, picked up the ball, tossed it in the air again and, again, missed.
“Strike two!” he said, picked up the ball, tossed it in the air and missed again.
“Strike three!” he said, then added, “I’m out!”
His mother asked, “So, are you disappointed you missed, since you wanted to be the greatest hitter in baseball?”
He replied, “No. I just discovered I’m the greatest pitcher in baseball!”
The benefits of having a positive attitude have been promoted time and time again. But, in all honesty, is it a valid perspective to adopt?
It’s been suggested, after all, that if you take a negative, pessimistic view, most of the time you’ll not be disappointed, and when occasionally things turn out better than you thought, you’ll be pleasantly surprised!
There’s no doubt that this is a messed up world and that circumstances often don’t turn out the way we want. The Christian/Biblical view agrees with this assessment and adds to it the idea that this is a sinful and fallen world. However, the Christian/Biblical view also calls for adopting a positive perspective in life! Why?
Because God’s a good God, and He’s ultimately in control of everything. He also has a plan, and that, too, is good. True, in the short run things often seem to go badly. But God has the long view in mind. It can sometimes take a long time before we see how something bad has turned out for good. Sometimes it can take an even longer time, into eternity, before we’ll see how the bad turned into good.
This is where faith, hope, and love come into play, faith in God that He has things in control, hope in His working out things for the good, and love for Him because He loves us and has our best interest at heart. This is why we can embrace a positive perspective in life!
“And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.” Romans 8:28