The Bright Side

One of my favorite ways to turn a bad situation around is a little game called "bright side." It came about when my husband and I went on a trip where everything went wrong. We went from a turbulent flight to a tiny rental car to a rain-filled forecast. We began to say things like "yes, it's raining but bright side, we got to see a beautiful rainbow over the hill." Or "yes, our car is tiny, but bright side, we spend less on gas!" This fun little game helped us to enjoy our time together without focusing on the negative parts.

I think this kind of game works well with the small inconvenient things in life, but I do this in other areas. I feed myself and others platitudes like "it will be fine…" or "things will all work out…" in areas beyond inconveniences. It's easy to say at that moment, but oh how it falls short when the diagnosis is cancer or job loss or divorce. "Bright side" doesn't quite cut it.

Jesus never told others a "bright side" of their hurt. He never handed anyone a pair of pink-tinted glasses. He was neither an optimist nor a pessimist. He was a truth-teller. The bright side is His Truth. He always pointed others to the Father while helping them see Hope even in dark places.
"Now is your time of grief, but I will see you again, and you will rejoice, and no one will take away your joy" -John 16:22

When looking at life, the best way to view it is through redeemed eyes. We will be able to see a real and messed up world that needs Hope. More importantly, we will also see it as the place where God still performs miracles and restoration. No unicorn and rainbows as the backdrop. Instead, it's where, in time, broken things can be made whole through Him.

"I pray that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened in order that you may know the hope to which he has called you, the riches of his glorious inheritance in his holy people, and his incomparably great power for us who believe." - Ephesians 1:18 -19
  1. Toss the tinted glasses. What situations make you uncomfortable and cause you to put on your rose-colored glasses?
  2. Stop the Platitudes. Don't try to make yourself or someone else feel better by giving them a trite statement. Sometimes a simple "I'm sorry you are going through this" is more meaningful than anything else you can say.
  3. Offer Hope through Truth. Is there someone (maybe yourself) that needs to hear the truth about what Jesus said even if it doesn't "feel" good to say? 


JL McCarthy

July 14, 2020