It’s hard to be optimistic. But, it’s possible. Life is stressful, and we can easily fixate on the negative. As we end the Thanksgiving season and prepare for Christmas, I encourage you to celebrate our many blessings.
A few weeks ago, the Chapel Leadership Team presented a version of a story that I found on the Don’t Sweat the Small Stuff website. (I trimmed the official version and changed the title.)
“Where’s the Pony?”
A mother and father were raising identical twin sons. One son (Jason) was an optimist; one son (Peter) was a pessimist. The parents fretted over Peter’s gloomy mindset and decided to seek help from a doctor. The doctor’s diagnosis…Peter’s pessimism stemmed from an irrational belief that his parents preferred Jason.
The doctor offered a cure. The holidays were approaching. The doctor told the parents to provide different gifts for their sons—a roomful of toys for Peter and a roomful of horse manure for Jason. At last, Peter would see that his parents did not prefer Jason. In desperation, the parents decided to follow the plan.
On Christmas morning, the parents rushed to Peter’s room. Despite a roomful of toys, Peter was sour and whined about perceived flaws in the gifts. Disappointed, the parents moved on to Jason’s room. They found Jason happily digging through horse manure. Jason turned to his parents and said, ““You can’t fool me mom and dad. With all this horse manure all over the place, there has to be a pony in here somewhere!”
“The moral of the story is that optimism comes from within ourselves. We tend to find what we’re looking for, so if we want to be optimistic, we really do have the power to do so. And, when we are optimistic, we are generally happier people.” Richard Carlson
Please enjoy the next few weeks of holiday celebrations. Look for the ponies.