In many respects, 2020 has been a blessing

Glass half empty or glass half full?

I often hear this phrase when people choose to look at a given situation and I think the same can be done with the year 2020.  I will be the first to admit that this year has been devastating and traumatic for many and my heart and prayers go out to anyone reading this who has lost a loved one or who has experienced any type of loss this year.

My intent for today is for those who are looking for a way to look at this year from a more beneficial perspective.  My wife of 38+ years often says I tend to be an optimist and I think she is correct.  As a result of this optimism I try to find the benefits when things occur versus the challenges.  I can share one personal example from my earlier life to help you understand.  I lost my first job on March 30, 1983.  This ended up being one of the best things that ever happened to me, but I fully admit that I didn’t see all of the benefit immediately.  What happened as a result is that I spent the next week by my father’s side as he took his final breaths after having battled lung cancer.  This loss of job also allowed me to fully explore employment in the greater Nashville area and we moved to the area in August 1983 as a result.

AS I reflect on the benefits provided by 2020, here are just a few that come to mind:

  1. While the pandemic is always lurking, I have found I have fewer distractions now than I can remember from any previous time.  Not being able to get out and mingle like I normally do has enabled me to focus more on those things that are most important and beneficial in my life.  Focusing on being available and spending time with our family has been first and foremost and I have enjoyed watching my sons and their families grow as well as watching our first grandchild grow and develop.  He is such a joy to behold.
  2. Relating to #1 is the fact that I have had the opportunity to spend more time with my wife this year.  We have worked at home together since March of this year and we have peacefully coexisted during that time.  I often remark to her that it is a good thing we like each other because this could be a stressful time for those who are limited to spending time with those they don’t care for.  This year has only reinforced the fact that I chose wisely and was well blessed when God put Gena into my life many years ago.  I sometimes forget to be thankful for this, but 2020 has only reinforced my thankfulness for this important part of my life.
  3. 2020 has provided ample time for reflection.  This includes what has happened as well as what I should be doing in the years ahead. I fully realize that I have more years behind me now that before me so it is important that I make the most of those days in the future.  This doesn’t mean I will over plan or program my work and my life, but it does mean that I will provide more margin for things than I might have in the past.  Having one grandson is amazing; having three or more grandchildren is something I cannot yet fully grasp because I have rarely had so much joy.

You too should take time to realize what the benefits have been from 2020.  Even thought the media might make you believe there is little good from this year, I tend to differ and have found that it is best for me to forge my ideas an thoughts from those I best know and respect and from the most authoritative source of wisdom I know, the Bible.

I pray that each of you will find joy in the coming weeks and months ahead and encourage you to find a way to see the best in all that happens in your life.