Hope for the best, prepare for the worst.
We've all heard that phrase. Some of us even live by it.
But I submit to you a worthy replacement to said phrase:
Hope for the best, prepare for the best.
Now, before you lambast me for being too Polly Anna/Osteenish, let me say that I'm not going to go on some diatribe about the power of positive thinking or speak out against planning and preparing. I, myself, have a nice little stock pile of shampoo and conditioner in case of nuclear meltdown or locust attack. So go ahead and continue building your bunkers. I'm more referring to our prayer life and the position of our hearts.
When I pray to God and hope that He answers me, but prepare for Him not to answer me, I'm not praying in faith. If I pray that God bless me with a new job and then I go sit on the couch and play Tekken 3 (that was the last time I played video games, don't judge) then I'm not really preparing myself for that new jobby job. But, if I were to pray for God to bless me with a new job and I went out and got a nice suit and started searching for jobs and filling out applications, then I'm preparing for Him to bring the blessing I know in my heart He already wants to bring.
I don't want to go through life preparing for the worst, because then when the worst happens, I'll say to myself, "Yep, just like I thought would happen." My preparation for let-downs gives me a negative mind set. I'm not trying to tout positive thinking as a cure all, but I am saying that the position of your heart and your faith in a God that loves you more than you can ever know, does make a difference in how you view the world and what happens in it.
I would rather be surprised when things don't work out, than to be prepared for it. When I pray for God to heal one of my patient's with cancer, I would rather believe He answers my prayers than to think it probably won't work because I hear of people dying with cancer every day. I don't let what I see or hear around me effect my faith. I chose to believe that no matter what the circumstance looks like, there is always hope. Some may think it's naive, but it's not. My heart is connected to the Creator of the Universe. I believe what He says to me. I believe He is Who He says He is, and I believe He is powerful and strong. When I talk to Him about my worries or troubles, I believe that He cares and is taking care of them for me. When I pray for others I believe that He moves. I don't ever want to hear of a tragedy or a seemingly hopeless situation and approach it in fear by saying, "Well, that's just what's happening in the world today." "Bad things happen to good people." "I knew he wouldn't make it."
I chose to hope for the best and prepare for the best. Not because I've done something good to deserve God's blessings, but because God commands our faith.
(I love my new name!!)