One of my struggles I constantly battle living in this neighborhood is pessimism. You hear gun shots and you assume someone is dealing drugs, you hear a police car and you assume domestic violence, you see an ambulance and you assume the worst. It is a battle to keep your attitude in check and remember that there are rainbows and that our creator has put them there as a promise.
Over the weekend two "For Rent" signs went up on our street. One right across the street and one next door. The minute I saw them my mind went to pessimism. In general rental properties are not a positive in our neighborhood. Transient people who have just enough cash to get them through a month or two. People who are usually earning their money in not so positive ways. It is discouraging and frustrating.
As I was looking at the two signs and pondering who our next neighbors would be Bennett, our middle child, came into the room. Bennett is a rainbow in our life. A reminder of promises and hope. He is a positive child always seeing the silver lining. He can miss a wide open lay up in a basketball game and still be just grinning. He can miss the bonus on the spelling test and laugh at they way he thought it was spelled. So as I am drifting towards the negative about the future of the rental property Bennett lights up and says with all the excitement of winning the lottery, "We're getting new neighbors!"
Like the Lord himself was taking my shoulders and shaking them saying "Don't you get it?" "New neighbors, new opportunities to share the gospel, new people that I have created for you to be my hands and feet to." The very reason we moved here in the first place.
In Proverbs 4:23 it says "Above all else, guard your heart, for everything you do flows from it." This is our family scripture this month and as I reflect on it I am reminded to guard my heart from pessimism. To look for the rainbows and the promises of God. And to have the pure joy that my 7 year old has even when negative assumptions rule our thoughts.