I was in a meeting yesterday at the end of the day where the negativity was so thick that you could cut it with a knife. People were angry, bitter and mad. They were very upset with the way things have been run in our school and they used our meeting time to voice their bitterness. I have noticed that negativity feeds on negativity. Give it an inch and it will take a mile. After one person said something negative, it opened the door for more negative comments. It wasn’t even the goal of the meeting. Negativity wasn’t on the agenda but it found its place there very easily. People came loaded and they had already thought about what they were going to say.
Now I am not here to criticize them or blame them. I just want to show how negativity can take over our emotions in such a powerful way that we give in to it at the drop of a hat. What was also interesting is that people enjoyed being negative and felt like what they said was helpful. I watched and saw the spiritual atmosphere go from “ok” to “really bad” in no time. My point is that negativity is rampant and it’s familiar. At times it is comforting to some. Where should we stand when it comes to negativity? Should we embrace it? Should we vent it out of our system from time to time? My answer is that we ought to give negativity no room in our house. When it comes knocking on our door it should see that our home has a “Do not enter” sign.
Negativity is enemy to the things of the Lord
Negativity is the expression of criticism of or pessimism about something. Negativity doesn’t come from a good place and it certainly doesn’t come from God. The Holy Spirit and negativity are not friends. If you look closely at the fruit of the Spirit, you will see that no part of the fruit is negative or pessimistic. Now the question is, what do we have in our spiritual fruit basket? Do we have positive fruit, do we have negative fruit or do we have a combination of both? I would think that a lot of people have a combination. Most people have a fruit platter that tastes both sweet and bitter. The problem is when we get used to the bitter taste of the fruit and we love it, we set ourselves up for more negativity to come in. I want my fruit basket to be delicious, sweet and tasty. I am not a fan of sour grapes and rotten tomatoes. If we focus on the fruit of the Spirit and we make an effort to maintain the good fruit, we will more easily reject the bad negative fruit. People say that we are what we eat so then we should eat good spiritual fruit and we will be good spiritual people.
The danger of expressing negativity
As I said earlier, negativity is an expression. It has to be said, it has to be expressed in one shape or form. The Bible has a lot to say about the power of our words. There are consequences linked to what we express. If we express positivity, we reap positivity. It we express negativity, we will sow negative seeds that can destroy our spiritual environment and poison other people’s soil as well. When the temptation to express negativity comes, we need to have a plan in place that will rid us of the negative expression. I say this often but if we stay close to the Lord, we will stand far from the evil in this world. There is no way that we can spend a lot of time with God, with His Spirit without being positively impacted by Him. When negativity comes around, we should hit it with a verse or two or with a positive comment. I like to rebuke it and refuse it. It talk against it and I reject it. You can’t help what you hear most of the time but you can choose what you are going to express. Negativity is not only expressed in words so it is good to also watch what our body language says and what our attitude displays. Speak the Word often and the Word will become a part of you.
I did feel bad for the people in attendance at the meeting yesterday because I know how terrible it can be when you are unhappy and you are mad at the world. I intervened at the end and I tried to give a positive spin on things. I don’t know if my words fell on deaf ears but I did what I could. You and I can be the positive agents that will influence our worlds with God’s good fruit and with His love. Let’s speak up with love and let’s be keepers of positivity in Jesus’ name!
Suggested reading: Colossians 4:6; Ephesians 4:29; 1 Peter 3:10