That Stinks! The Power Of Negativity

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Have you ever been around a person whose attitude just stinks? They are negative all the time and no matter how positive you stay, they have something that can dampen your fire? Their life’s perspective isn’t one of joy but one of impending doom.

What causes them to be negative all the time? I think for some it comes from a feeling that if they think negatively about situations and don’t get their hopes up then they are not disappointed when they don’t get what it is they thought they might. My husband is usually a positive guy but get him ready for vacation or trip of any kind and a couple of days before he begins to get quiet and moody. Why? Because he convinces himself that this vacation is doomed, that it won’t be fun like the others we’ve been on or that something will happen at church to keep us from going. This negative talk keeps him from getting his hopes up in case he is disappointed. Crazy? You bet! However, some people don’t just live moments of their lives this way, they live their whole lives this way.

Have you ever watched the Debbie Downer skits on SNL? Everyone is happy and she has a negative word that eventually brings everyone down. We all know people like this, they are never happy about anything. They have the ability to sober a room with a sentence. I don’t think they intentionally want people to feel down like they do I just don’t think they give it much thought. If you are a person who is easily influenced or bent toward negativity then limit your time in the company of others who share this bent.

Proverbs 23:7 For as he thinks in his heart, so is he.
Matthew 12:34 For out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks.

So it seems that the reason negativity in speech exists is that is flowing out of the negative heart of that person. Whether that person was hurt profoundly and now sees the world as harsh, horrible, and out to get them or whether they were born with a negative bent towards life, they are speaking out of what is going on within their own mind.

This helps us to deal with them as you see that their negative talk is not because they want to bring us down, rather it’s a byproduct of what is going on within them. Can you imagine how utterly sad to live your life always thinking something bad is going to happen? To see life as negative and that there is nothing to look forward to? Life is so great, even in the hard times, that I can’t imagine not having the faith that things will get better as the general thought process of life and that there is something better right around the corner for me. Yet, for the negative person, that something better isn’t coming because even if it’s a blessing there is a failure to recognize it because they are only looking for the negative and they miss the positive.

Then there are those for whom if they conceded that this was good, whatever “this” happened to be in their life would be to miss out on the next greater thing. For them it’s a process of not wanting to settle and instead missing it all. For these people they have never been able to find contentment in their own soul. Can you imagine a life where the good in it was always missed as you waited for the next best thing? That is a tragedy. Does this not break your heart? They live their lives in a way that the great parts of life will be missed because they are looking down the road not to see the positive but to catch the negative.

So the next time you are in the presence of the Debbie Downer in your life, take a moment to point out the positive. Refuse to go down the trail of negativity with them. Refuse to let them get you down. Refuse to accept their negative word over your situation. Begin to speak life into their lives. Instead of walking out with the stench of negativity in your nostrils, speak a positive word into their life. They may counter with a negative but refuse to accept it. Speak life, speak positive and refuse to let the stink get on you!

Published in: on October 19, 2009 at 2:00 am  Comments (1)  

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  1. I was raised by parents where depression was a part of them, so we heard a lot of negativity. I can honestly say once I came to know God and have a daily relationship with him, I learned to speak positive words in their life. My dad has passed but, my mom now lives with us and she has come along ways, she used to always have a negative comment just about everything I don’t think she meant to I think it was the “norm” in her and my dad’s lives. I still see once in awhile she will slip into that negativity and I just come back with something positive and she will say “you know you are right” silently I am thanking Jesus that she is turning things around:) I can’t say that I don’t fall prey to stinking thinking myself, but I will sit by myself and assess my day and I get convicted over something I have said. I always am praying over the generational curse of depression and negativity–I sometimes see it in my son and have to pray it away ASAP!!


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