Do you ever think about that philosophical question…is your glass half-empty or half-full? It is all relative, I suppose, and totally a matter of one’s individual perception of each particular experience and event, colored by all that has gone before. We are all complicated and unique, which only stands to reason that we will interpret our respective realities in different ways. I recently encountered someone that made me ponder this age old question yet again. Their glass was most definitely half-empty. It was draining and disheartening to be in that orbit. In reflecting, I had to ask myself where I landed on this question. Can we make up our own minds to be half-full? Can we pour more fluid into our own glass? Can we surround ourselves with half-fulls and become more so?
When I think about this question, I realize that my glass has changed over time. I imagine there to be a cosmic Scale of Justice for weighing our optimism and pessimism. Each of our events is placed in the balance to tip it in one direction or the other. I think that in the beginning of my life, my scales were always tipped toward optimism. I saw life as an adventure and I was surrounded by people who loved me. My tiny world felt very secure. Did these happy beginnings give me a predetermined default to half-full that I could eventually come back to? My glass became a bit cloudy as a young teen and the water level changed as the world poured a few negative emotions inside. Throughout these years, there were many what if’s, I wish’s, why didn’t’s, and I can’t’s, tossed into that glass. The chemical reactions of envy and negativity served to evaporate quite a bit of my liquid. Add a little mix of teenage angst and hormones and you have quite the cocktail for a half-empty glass. I wonder now if I looked that way to the people around me, or if it just feel that way inside.
The word “optimism” actually derives from the Latin word “optima,” meaning the best outcome or belief in the greatest good. Isn’t that exactly what Christ is…the best outcome and the greatest good? With age, with intent, and in searching for my Tree Stars, my Faith has strengthened me in these latter years. In knowing that the Creator of the Universe knows my name, has gifted me with His Grace, forgiven my sins, and given me a life filled with Blessings, how can my scales not be tipped back in a positive direction? How can my glass be anything but half-full? It doesn’t hurt that He also gave me a wonderful husband to stand beside me and pour kindness, respect, love, and encouragement into my glass. I still doubt…but I am hopeful. I still question….but I trust. I still fear…but I try let it go. I still need to go to His word every day and allow Him to pour into me. I think, instead of a glass with half of anything , I would prefer to think of it as my whole vessel with God’s continuous love pouring in and spilling out through holes onto others like a waterfall. That is what I’ll aspire to from now on.
But in your hearts revere Christ as Lord. Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. ~ 1 Peter 3:15