My sweet sister, the very one who is still recovering from hip surgery and lives daily with Parkinson's, found out this week she has glaucoma. To treat it and save her eyesight, she'll need to put drops in her eyes every day for the rest of her life.
Listen to what she told me about it: "I read that if you have blue or green eyes, the drops might turn your eyes brown! I've always wanted brown eyes! And another side effect is that it will turn your eyelashes dark and thick. So now I'll have beautiful dark eyes!"
That's my sister.
She lives her life playing "The Glad Game". Like Pollyanna, (which we call her!) she is always able to find something good in every situation.
It took awhile, but her optimistic attitude finally started rubbing off on me, and oh my gosh, what a relief it is to recognize those blessings that are tucked into bad news.
Playing the Glad Game isn't just about helping ourselves get through tough times, though. The best thing about it is how your joy and gratitude is contagious. It might be just the inspiration - the shining light - someone else needs to find their way out of personal darkness... pain, illness, loss of a loved one, discouragement, anger, financial problems...
There's so much potential darkness in this world trying to blind us to all that we have to be grateful for.
"...give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God's will for us in Christ Jesus." 1 Thess. 5:18
I remember groaning when I read Corrie Ten Boom's description of the flea infestation in the concentration camp bunkroom, enough to turn their skin black when they entered the area to sleep, and I agreed with her that there was nothing about fleas to be grateful for. But urged by her sister Betsy (another Pollyanna-type, obviously), Corrie reluctantly told God thank you for the fleas.
When I read a little further how she realized it was because of the fleas that the guards wouldn't step foot in the bunkroom, allowing them freedom to hold prayer sessions and Bible readings and comfort each other through those dark days, a little light went on in my mind.
I'm grateful I was able to read their story - I'm grateful for that little light that now reminds me how, when something bad happens (and there are bad things - those fleas were bad!) God can squeeze something good out of the worst of things.
I'm reminded to give thanks in all circumstances, even if, like Corrie with the fleas, I'm not sure exactly why.
I'm still not as good with the Glad Game as my sister is, but I promise to keep practicing. I hope you'll play along. I think you'll like it.
Hope you have a blessed Thanksgiving!