Rose-Colored Glasses

But these rose colored glasses
That I’m looking through
Show only the beauty
‘Cause they hide all the truth

–John Conlee
Today our culture often stresses the ‘Be Happy’, the ‘Be Positive’, in spite of the reality that is staring them in the face. It’s a form of idealism, and often of denial. Idealism in itself is not inherently a bad thing, but it can be. An Idealist will see things as they might or should be rather than as they are. Such a person is often motivated by their idealistic perspective to try and make the world a better place as they perceive it ought to be. Idealistic individuals will often see potential in others rather than their shortcomings. They will essentially ignore any faults as a result. Idealistic folks are viewed as the optimistic ones. They will often point out the silver-lining in things, even in the worst of situations. They are the ones who will often say: ‘Well, at least…”. Others have wisely stated in response: “There is no ‘at least’ in child loss’.
Idealists, however, have a downside. Their perspective often ignores the reality of a situation. An idealistic wife married to a batterer will remain a prisoner of a violent situation because she will continually focus on the ‘honeymoon’ stage of the violence, ignoring the rest of the cycle. When a bereaved Momma has had a pregnancy loss, an idealist will often come alongside her and in an attempt to point out the silver-lining will say: “At least you can have other children”. Such a statement causes more injury, though, to the bereaved. It devalues the child that was to be; it dismisses the pain of the grieving.
I use to be an Idealist many many moons ago when I was young. I truly believed that ‘world-peace’ was possible; I truly believed that if I did all the right things, everything in my life would go well and I would be happy. I hadn’t yet lived my life long enough to learn that bad things do happen to good people; that no matter how much I extended love to others, there would be those that rejected it and would choose hate. As I matured, I took off my ‘Rose-Colored Glasses’ and became a Realist. Those who are still wearing those rosey glasses, at times will perceive me as being ‘negative’. No. I’m simply choosing to ‘be real’. I still choose to follow:

Philippians 4:8

“Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things.”

Folks often cherry pick the words in that verse. The idealists will focus on the ‘lovely’, that which is of ‘good report’. Yet, they ignore that which is ‘true’ and ‘honest’ and ‘just’. Then they place upon such thinking a pleasant sounding term: ‘Positive Thinking’. If anyone comes along and speaks Truth, their bubble gets popped. They reject a ‘truth-sayer’ and either dismiss them or react in anger. They may even proclaim: ‘You just don’t want to feel better’. TILT! I’m sure such do exist, but in my personal experience in my almost sixty-four years, I’ve never met anyone who truly does not want to be happy.

Seeing things for what they are, in Truth, does not make a person ‘negative’. It may mean embracing the harsh reality of things which may be anything but pleasant, but it doesn’t mean they are incapable of having an inner Joy especially when they place their trust in God. Paul despaired of life itself, yet he simultaneously rejoiced in all things. He did so because he was able to separate his hardships from his eternal life in God’s Spirit. He did not rejoice in his circumstances; he rejoiced in the Lord in the midst of his horrific circumstances. HUGE difference. The Idealist will try and rejoice in his circumstances, themselves. The same applies to gratefulness. We will never be grateful that our child is no longer physically with us. We can, however, still be grateful that we have Hope of seeing our child again for all eternity, never again to be parted.

Rejoice with them that do rejoice, and weep with them that weep.” (Romans 12:15) seems to often be taken out of balance. Those that are mourning often find great difficulty in rejoicing with another when something good happens in their life. It even produces anger and envy, at times. They believe that because they weep, everyone else must be weeping, too. Conversely, those that are rejoicing in their life are often unwilling to weep with those who weep. They don’t want anyone raining on their parade so they avoid the one who is mourning. They don’t want to be ‘brought down’. Why can’t we who mourn be happy for those who have something good happening in their lives? Why can’t the person rejoicing take time to come alongside the one who is weeping? Are we so afraid that as the mourner that our grief will be dismissed? Are we so afraid as the rejoicer that we will no longer be able to rejoice if we take time to walk through the valley of grief with another?

Grief and Joy do not oppose one another. Both can exist simultaneously, which brings me back around to Rainbows. If rain and sun can abide side by side producing the beautiful colors of the rainbow, can’t rejoicers and mourners do likewise? Am I now being idealistic by thinking so? No. I’m being a realist. While Jesus was sweating drops of blood, He was able to endure because of the Joy set before Him. It is possible in Christ to both rejoice and weep. When we are weeping and recall our child’s laughter, for that moment we smile in the midst of our tears and heartache. I think of attending the weddings of two of my children. I was happy for them, yet I cried over the loss of what was. It’s called: ‘Tears of Joy’. It’s the bittersweet moments that bring together the weeping and rejoicing, as they become one. We don’t need ‘Rose-Colored Glasses’ to be at peace, the peace which passes all understanding (Philippians 4:7).

Image result for rose colored glasses photo

(((HUGS)))  Jude Gibbs, Author of ‘Gifts from the Ashes’ available at:
http://www.directtextbook.com/isbn/9781498496728?geis=y
Articles on WordPress.com: https://wordpress.com/posts/bereavedparentsblog.wordpress.com.

Also, a Contributor on ‘The Mighty’: https://themighty.com/author/jude-gibbs/

Please help spread the Word. TY! (((HUGS)))

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