What do you think of when you think of the words abundant, plentiful and prosperity? What can there be an abundance of? Could it be friendships, health, peace and, of course, money?
When everything is going our way and we are experiencing abundance, life is a pretty smooth ride, isn't it? But what happens when life is not going as we would like it to? Do we moan about our misfortune to anyone who will listen?
When things are not going as I have planned -- in fact, perhaps, I have had a rotten day -- and someone asks how things are going, I say, "Unbelievable."
When you were little, did you ever hear your parents say, "If you can't say something nice, don't say anything"?
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I had a minister friend tell me something one day as I was ranting and raving about all the things going wrong in a class I was teaching.
She said, "Sandy, you can go on complaining forever or you can decide to find something to like, even if it is only one thing. Concentrate what your students are doing right."
Find something to like.
Just a little shift in attitude can make a big difference in relationships, health, peace and especially in financial circumstances.
I can be angry at my friend for something he has done to slight me, or I can let myself remember all of the things he has done that are more important than that one little slight.
As health challenges limit my activities, I can complain to everyone or I can marvel at all the things I am still capable of doing.
In any situation, it's good to find something to like, to see how I am blessed.
For example, the person who loses her job only to find out a close relative is seriously ill can step-in to provide some long-term care. Or a young man breaks up with his first love only to discover the right and perfect soul mate, whom he would have never met if he were still married.
We are living in an energy field and our positive thoughts send out positive energy. And isn't that better than sending out negative energy?
I had an Aunt Muriel. She was my mother's youngest sister and was almost always down on her luck. From the time I was 9 years old until I was a senior in high school, she stayed at our house and in my room. From college-age on, when I had the choice to be somewhere with Aunt Muriel, I opted not to.
In my early studies of Science of Mind, I went to a forgiveness workshop and was able to release the unjustified dislike for my aunt. I discovered that she was a person who genuinely loved me -- and I had shut her out.
By that time she was in a care facility for Alzheimer's patients. Whenever I would visit her, she would light up. Even when she wasn't sure exactly who I was, she knew she loved me.
Find something to like.
Winston Churchill once said, "We are all worms, but I do believe I am a glowworm." Humorous, yes, but if you had to be a worm wouldn't being a glowworm be something you could like?
-- The Rev. Sandra Smith is pastor of Center for Spiritual Living in Kennewick. Questions and comments should be directed to editor Lucy Luginbill in care of the Tri-City Herald newsroom, 333 W. Canal Drive, Kennewick, WA 99336. Or email firstname.lastname@example.org.