How to Have a Positive Outlook on Life when Everything is Terrible

Hello everyone! I hope your week has been going well so far. I would like to apologize for not posting over the past couple of weeks, some of you know why, but for those who don’t here’s a little update. My grandfather passed away two weeks ago unexpectedly; like we knew it was going to be soon, but we had no idea this soon. So the last couple of weeks have been spent with my mom, encouraging her and supporting her. It’s harder for her because she doesn’t have a husband so I feel like I have to step in and help support her during this tough time.

Thankfully we know that he had a personal relationship with Christ and had accepted Christ as his Savior, which brings us a tremendous amount of joy. So while obviously sad, “we do not grieve as do the rest who have no hope.” 1

So it was a wonderful week full of family visits and coming together to encourage one another. But I’ve missed this. I’ve missed figuring out my thoughts and word vomiting them on “paper;” and I’m so happy to be back. Hopefully for a long time…

Now onto our regularly scheduled programming:

I have those days every now and then when I just simply feel like everything is going down the drain. My life is going nowhere and I’m just sitting here trying to pick up the pieces of myself. I had one of those days yesterday. I’m an empath, which pretty much just means I can really feel other people’s emotions as if they were my own emotions. So like if someone was stressed about something, it would really be difficult for me not to get stressed about what they were stressed about.

And so I cried a lot yesterday. I cried because of the pain of my circumstances, but also other’s circumstances. And when I get into this sadness it’s easy to stay there. Because let’s be honest, there are plenty of bad things to cry about in the world. No wonder 300 million people around the world have clinical depression. Just look around and you see famine, death, and struggle everywhere. But that was exactly my problem. I was looking around this world seeing everything that was going on through my own eyes. I was reminded of a quote from a good friend of mine. Corrie Ten Boom, who was in a Nazi concentration camp for a time, said this.

“If you look at the world, you’ll be distressed. If you look within, you’ll be depressed. If you look at God, you’ll be at rest.”

Corrie was a woman who lost both her sister and her father in Nazi concentration camps and was persecuted for quite some time herself but had the faith and the wisdom to say this. How encouraging! And we see this theme all over scripture. Matthew 11:28-30 comes to mind, “Come to Me, all who are weary and heavy-laden, and I will give you rest. Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For My yoke is easy and My burden is light.”

So how do we give our burdens to the Lord?

I think prayer is the biggest way. I know for me it’s easy to talk to Karl, my husband, about my problems or my mom and then completely forget about talking to God about it. But how silly is that? We forget that we have a direct line to the one who created everything that we see!

“Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all comprehension, will guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus. Finally, brethren, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is of good repute, if there is any excellence and if anything worthy of praise, dwell on these things.”2

I had honestly never really seen verses 6-8 together before researching this. You hear them quoted separately all the time, but I think reading them together paints an incredibly impactful picture. When everything is falling down around us, God tells us to look at Him, with thankfulness, and rest in His arms.

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The Psalms come to mind when I think of resting in His arms. We see David, again and again, calling out to God for deliverance and then resting in who God is. Because we know who He is we can weather the storms no matter how hard they blow.

Another resource that I’ve found particularly helpful is the testimony of martyrs. When trials seemed to press upon them, we see the incredible faith they had in our God. And their God is our God, the same God who saved the Israelites from the Egyptians. Throughout the Old Testament, we see God’s love for His people, the Israelites. And we’re promised that love as well.

“Yes, my soul, find rest in God; my hope comes from Him. Truly He is my rock and my salvation; He is my fortress, I will not be shaken. My salvation and my honor depend on God; He is my mighty rock, my refuge.” 3

A women’s high calling to Godliness “You are to consider this reading of a psalm as a necessary beginning of your devotion, something that is to awaken all that is good and holy within you, that is to call your spirits to their proper duty, to set you in your best posture towards heaven, and tune all the powers of your soul to worship and adoration.”

So How do We have a Positive Outlook on Life?

The only way we can have true peace and true rest in this life is by relying solely on the one who controls all things. When we truly trust in Him alone is when we can have full assurance that everything will be alright. The storm might be raging around us and everything ‘going wrong.’ But we will be unbothered because we know what God promises for us as Christians. 4

“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.” We know. We know, through what the Bible tells us, that in the end, everything will work out exactly as He has planned. So let’s rest in that knowledge that God’s plan for our lives is exactly what we need.

So let’s stop the prideful sin of trusting in our own strength and fully rely on and rest in His caring arms.

Redeemed by the King

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Photo by adrian on Unsplash

Photo by Pablo Heimplatz on Unsplash

  1. 1 Thessalonians 4:13
  2. Philippians 4:6-8
  3. Psalm 62:5-7
  4. Romans 8:28