WHY ARE WE SO PESSIMISTIC?                                                                                               Andy Hollifield 12-29-16

As I sat down and began to write this morning I began to think about the year that is coming to a close. I had mentioned something along this line at prayer meeting Monday night at Morning View Baptist Church in Weaverville. Pastor Bill Jenkins had asked me to open the service and while I was doing that I mentioned the fact that you never hear anyone say “This has been such a great year I hate to see it end.” Why is that? I try my best to be a positive person so why is it that when I look back at this year my mind automatically goes to the hard times? I am as guilty as anyone else and maybe more than most. I have never met anyone that looks at the good times first. If I get real honest with myself, I have to admit it hasn’t been that bad of a year.

I don’t believe I have had to stand up front at the funeral home this year receiving friends. I have known a few people who passed that I went and paid my respects to their family but probably not as many as last year. I have not lost a close family member at all this year. I have not been in the hospital as a patient overnight or even had a surgery this year. Not unless you count having teeth pulled. I have gotten another vehicle this year that God has allowed us to get after about a year of two of looking for one. It wasn’t new but it was new to us. We’ve had mechanical issues a time or two with vehicles but I don’t believe it has been as bad as last year or years past. We have always had a way of paying for repairs without too much debt. We’ve had to replace a major appliance but were able to do that. We’ve had some not so great news from doctors but nothing where we were told to get our affairs in order. We’ve had some significant aches and pains at times but haven’t had to use a cane, walker, or crutches all year. We’ve had some surprise expenses come up but were able to cover them with the help of the Lord and others. I haven’t sat behind my building one time this year and prayed preparing myself to lose everything I have worked for all my life, like I have in times past. I haven’t spent one night dreading a surgery cause I haven’t had one. I haven’t walked to the cabinet and been without something to eat this year or ever. I haven’t ever had to wear the same clothes today as I wore yesterday because I didn’t have any more. I have spent each night this year with a roof over my head and food in my belly when I wanted it. I have been able to replace my shoes anytime they started taking on water. I had the privilege of adding six states to the list of those I have been in. I have even lost weight this year because I tried to not because of a major illness. I haven’t had so much as a cold but maybe once or twice this year. We’ve had some issues with our son this year but not as bad as times past. We’ve never had the issues that a lot of parents have had to deal with. I haven’t spent one night in his life wondering where he was or if he was in trouble or if he was ever going to come home again. God has helped us through some pretty significant issues and given more patience at times than I ever thought I could have. Yes I know that “tribulation worketh patience” and that has proven true once again this year but not as needful as in years past. Never spent one night freezing because my power was off for days on end. My home has been warm in the winter and cool in the summer. I’ve griped about the power bill but it has been a lot higher in times past. As dry as the region has been this year, my well never was. Although I live within a mile or two of one of the forest fires back in the fall, my home was never threatened by it. I didn’t have any cattle this year but I didn’t lose any either. I am writing on a computer that replaced our old one back in the summer. I have discovered a new way to get the gospel out on Facebook that I had never thought of before. By writing this post each day, I have found myself reading more in the scriptures than what I had previously. I have had numerous opportunities to preach the gospel and felt the presence of the Holy Ghost a whole lot of times this year. We had a presidential election and didn’t get stuck with what we were afraid we would even though what we got wasn’t necessarily who we would have liked to of had. We still have a good congressman for our district who I believe is a Godly man. Our country so far, even with all of it’s faults and failures, hasn’t been taken over by foreign forces or reverted completely to communism, socialism, or a dictatorship. We are still able to worship God according to the dictates of our heart even though the world is less tolerant of Christians now in our country than ever before. The churches I have been in this year haven’t been attacked by gunmen or terrorists. Our ministry has been able to help a lot of people although we did have some schools refuse help because we distribute God’s word. We still have bibles and guns and neither have been confiscated yet. A lot of preachers have ruined themselves this year but I thank God I wasn’t one of them but only by his grace.

I could go on and on and you can too if you are honest about it. We have all seen a lot of prayers answered in the past year and probably none of us could even begin to count our blessings. The Lord truly does “daily loadeth us with benefits”(Psalms 68:19). Truly “This is the day which the Lord hath made; we will rejoice and be glad in it” (Psalms 118:24). God truly does “…satisfy us early with mercy; that we may rejoice and be glad all our days.” Enough said! Have a blessed day in the Lord!!!

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