Life is Amazing. Life is Awful.

This story is based on one that was published about two years ago. A lot of things have changed in my life, both positive and negative. That’s life. It’s how we react to these changes that make all the difference in our lives.

Life is amazing. But life can be awful. It is full of ups and downs from the time we are born until the day we die. How we handle them is our choice and some people do it with more panache than others, pushing through the pain and not letting it consume them. When we are young, it is totally acceptable to lay down on the floor and throw a rip-roaring, screaming temper tantrum, but usually it’s not too cool to do that once we are adults. There are some days I feel like taking the rip-roaring approach, but I usually don’t.

By the time we grow up, we have learned how to stuff down our feelings and we don’t allow ourselves to show how we really feel when the “downs” come along. When things are going great in our lives, we show the world how happy we are in our facial expressions, our words and actions. The thought of the next challenging life event doesn’t even enter our minds for a moment. But when things aren’t going well, it is hard to remember how happy we felt during those special and glorious times.

With my faith and God by my side, I lean on all that I have learned and experienced through my life. I realize that fearful thoughts damage our souls. And they are often merely illusionary thoughts, not based on reality at all. The only real and true thoughts are the ones that are based on the love we have in our hearts. “The primary cause of unhappiness is never the situation but the thought about it.” – Eckhart Tolle.

Don’t believe the random thoughts that linger with you in the dark of night or at times of weakness, especially if your thoughts come from a fearful place thanks to the evil in the world. Instead, focus on what is going right in your life, be grateful and appreciate all that God has given to you. Search for ways to help strengthen your trust and faith. Be led by your hopes, dreams and aspirations, and not pushed around by your fears and doubts. 

I try to keep a scorecard each day where I list all of the amazing things that happen through the day. Most days, God is in the lead, moving way out in front. Yet there are days where Satan wins a few points, reminding me that I need to lean on God even more. The Holy Spirit guides me through the mighty boulders that Satan uses to block my way. Some days I go to bed completely out of gas and I will ask for guidance and strength as I drift off to sleep. I wake up the next day focused, and feeling refreshed. I banish the negative thoughts that were rolling through my head the day before. 

I never ask “Why?.” God does not cause my problems. Often it is the very people that I trust and love the most who are following a path laid out by Satan while thinking they are righteous and entitled to their actions against me. I could hate these people as they strive to destroy me with Satan’s guidance. However, I try to pray for my enemies every day as I take my first steps toward a new day filled with hope and love. 

“Life is amazing. And then it’s awful. And then it’s amazing again. And in between the amazing and the awful, it’s ordinary and mundane and routine. Breathe in the amazing, hold on through the awful, and relax and exhale during the ordinary. That’s just living…heartbreaking, soul-healing, amazing, awful, ordinary life. And it’s breathtakingly beautiful.” – LR Knost

I give thanks to God when life is amazing and pray for strength and courage to move past the awful part. I pray for the people who wish to harm me, whose hearts are filled with bitterness and hate. I pray that God touches their life, that they move past their stubbornness and hate. I pray that they seek the truth and are not afraid to stand up for it, no matter how painful it can be. 

I pray that they finally realize that life is truly amazing when they walk with God.

Focused

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