“Nothing can come between us and the love of Christ, even if we are troubled or worried, or being persecuted, or lacking food or clothes, or being threatened or even attacked. These are the trials through which we triumph, by the power of him who loved us” (Romans 8: 35, 37).

Positivity in rain or shine is critical to maintaining our Christian witness. Preacher Joel Osteen is always smiling on his broadcasts, as he reminds his viewers and listeners that God has amazing things in store for them if they just believe. Joel tells his followers not to be discouraged by setbacks or negative voices in their lives, but to get ready to allow God to pour out His abundance to them. It’s no wonder his flock seems to be so large. People are fired up, having faith that God will bless them and their lives will be just wonderful and prosperous.

Joel has a point in that we do have a reason to be positive. I would say it’s not about achieving prosperity in material possessions, but it is our hope of salvation through the risen Savior that strengthens us and makes us less dependent on anything but the love of Jesus to sustain us. Comporting ourselves to seeking only God’s plan, relying only on His divine grace, can bring a sustainable measure of peace and joy.

All of that said, our hope in salvation can be overshadowed by our doubts and fears, and it’s easy under pressure to lapse into thinking and acting as if the future really depended on us. I know the sun is shining above the clouds, yet the days can be gray and dreary, and when things aren’t going my way, my mood can show it. My family knows it too. A crabby witness isn’t getting it done!

So, the challenge is to be present in the moment with Christ, ready to serve His kingdom each day, while being pleasant as well. This is about believing that God puts people and situations in our path, and we need to be prepared to see the face of Christ in all, and to be a positive, credible witness. Others may depend on our upbeat encouragement to get them through the day and perhaps move them closer to the love of Christ. Got to be ready, so get happy today!

Have a Blessed Week!

Joe

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