Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Optimism’s Hope by Martin Wiles

Lay off. The pattern of my life.

I swore when moving to Greenwood, South Carolina, I would never work at Greenwood Mills. But I did.

Foreign imports were hurting business. Shortly, weekend shifts were discontinued and layoffs arrived regularly. Since I was the new kid, they chose me repeatedly. I was usually called back to the same job, but the last time around sweeping was the only position available.

I was pessimistic about the job and the wages. Sweeping eight hours didn’t excite me and pay barely above minimum wage didn’t help. But I hoped for better things and was eventually rewarded the overseer’s position. 

Things don’t always work out so well. King David looked when he should have turned his head, acted when he should have walked away and followed both with deception and murder. The sordid sin produced a child but cost David the infant’s life. Yet he remained optimistic until the end, hoping God would heal the baby. While the child was still alive, I fasted and wept. I thought, Who knows? The LORD may be gracious to me and let the child live. (II Samuel 12:22)

God: I never promised you a pain free path. Me: But why not? God: I want you to trust my love and decisions whether they make sense to you or not.

Being confident of God’s control and unconditional love makes optimism in the darkest times possible. Unconfessed sin darkens the tunnel but confession reveals the light of optimism’s hope.  

Prayer: Father, enable us to look for the bright side even when there appears to be none.