By 13th November 2020 Uncategorised

One cold day, I returned from my morning run. My husband asked me how it went. I said, “It was very muddy. There was a lot of rain last night.” He continued: “But did you enjoy yourself?” 

A little confused, I replied, “It was cold!” He paused and then he challenged me: “You have a default towards negativity! Why can’t you just tell me you had a great run?”

I didn’t like what he was saying, but I realized that he was right. Have you ever picked up a shopping cart at the grocery store only to find that your trolley has a wonky wheel? You have to work extra hard to keep it from veering to the left or the right.


Just like that cart, I realized that I had a tendency to be negative. I veered too easily into gloom.  The worst part was the why! I didn’t want people to think I was enjoying life too much in case they expected more from me. I saw life being tough as a ticket to special concessions. 

I worked hard to change my default setting.  2 Cor 10:5b says, “We take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ.” I started monitoring and then challenging my own negativity. When I heard inner pessimism, I swapped it for bible based optimism. 

If I had a packed schedule, instead of thinking, “I’ve got too much to do,” I would conclude, “I have a full week ahead and I’m going to be productive.” 

If the weather was bad, I would replace thoughts like, “Not another dreary day,” with, “This is the day the Lord has made, I will rejoice and be glad!” I soon started to find life more enjoyable.


In Britain, we have an awful habit. When people ask us how we are, a classic response is: “Not too bad.” It’s a means of saying that we are okay, but it is harmful because it is negative. 

Listen to the way you think about your life. Do you often feel let down? Do you complain in your heart when people are late or you have to wait? Do you get irritated with other drivers? Are you unhappy when you don’t get your way? 

When we moan our way through the day, it quenches our joy and builds a gloomy inner atmosphere. It creates a breeding ground for self-pity.


I have heard people say, “New levels bring new devils.” They are making the point that the higher we rise, the greater the potential for pressure. A chief executive carries a heavier weight of responsibility than an executive trainee.

If my reaction to every trial at a junior level is bewilderment then perhaps I am not ready for promotion? If I moan every time things get tough now then I may need to spend longer at this stage learning how to handle things.

If you realize your reactions need to change, I encourage you to filter your thoughts. Prov 15:15 says: “Everything seems to go wrong when you feel weak and depressed. But when you choose to be cheerful, every day will bring you more and more joy and fullness.” (Passion Translation)

If you enjoyed this, please hit the heart button at the top. This is an excerpt from My Pretend Friend. It was certainly written for 2020 and is possibly my most important book. If you haven’t yet read it, get your copies here. Also, please make our email address a favorite so that none of my blogs land in your junk!

En un día frío, regrese de mi carrera matutina. Mi esposo me pregunto como me fue. Le conteste “había mucho lodo, llovió mucho anoche.” El dijo, “pero lo disfrutaste?”

Un poco confundida le conteste, “estaba frío.” El hizo una pausa y me retó, “te estás alineando a lo negativo. Porque no me dices si te gusto tu tiempo de correr?”

No me gusto lo que me dijo, pero me di cuenta que estaba correcto. Alguna ves has tomando un carrito en el supermercado, y las ruedas no le funcionan bien? Te toca trabajar extra para que no se vaya a la derecha o izquierda.


Como el carrito, me di cuenta que tenía la tendencia de ser negativa. Me alineaba fácil a oscuridad. Lo peor era porque! No quería que la gente se diera cuenta que estaba disfrutando mucho la vida y esperaran más de mi. Miraba la vida dura como un boleto a conseciones. 

Trabaje duro para cambiar mi defecto.  2 Corintios 

Si el tiempo estaba malo, cambie el “otro día triste” por “este es el día que hizo el Señor.” Pronto empecé a disfrutar mas la vida. 


En Gran Bretaña, tenemos un hábito terrible. Cuando nos preguntan como estamos, contestasmos “no tan mal.” Se refiere a que estamos bien, pero de una manera negativa. 

Escucha la manera que ves tu vida. A menudo té sientes triste? Te quejas en tu corazón cuando personas llegan tarde o te hacen esperar? Te irritas con otros conductores? Eres infeliz cuando no salen cosas como quieres? 

Cuando nos quejamos por la vida, contritamos el gozo y edificamos una atmósfera gris. Crea un lugar de crecimiento para la autocompasion. 


He escuchado decir “nuevos niveles, nuevos demonios.” Están haciendo el punto que en la medida que avancemos más alto, mayor sere la presión por el potential. El jefe ejecutivo carga un mayor peso de responsabilidad que un aprendiz en entrenamiento. 

Si mi respuesta a pruebas en nivel júnior es desconcierto, no estoy listo para promoción. Si me quejo frente a la dificultad, necesito pasar más tiempo en el nivel de aprendizaje para poder manejar las cosas. 

Si te has dado cuenta que tu actitud tiene que cambiar, te ánimo a filtrar tus pensamientos. Prov 15:15 dice “Todos los días del afligido son difíciles; Mas el de corazón contento tiene un banquete continuo.” 

Si disfrutaste esto presiona el corazón al principio. Esto es un extracto de “mi amargo que pretende.” Fue escrito para este 2020 y le considero uno de mis mejores libros. Si no lo has leido, obtén una copia aquí.  


  • Christine Fogarty says:

    Hi Jo
    This one is really amazing and wow really experienced the lord’s joy peace in such depth after reading this blog thank you lord for delivering this message through Jo …Jo how humble you are every time I’ve read your blog’s your so honest about the challenges you have ….and how beautiful you respond to those challenges that in its self really humbled me because I would normally have retaliated and defended myself so you have encouraged me in that way too and ask the holy spirit to keep me alert too as I have been prone to negative and was suffering. From a real anxuoisness in confusion that seemed to get worse worse and yet today I give thanks to God sooo much for your blog bless you again for being open honest and humble enough to accept it and share so others can be set free god bless you your blog’s have really challenged me in a positive way bless youhapoy Christmas to you your family and blessings on you through out 2021

  • Chin says:

    Pastor Jo,
    This is so true and particularly during these Co-Vid times. This season has come with its own set of challenges for EVERYONE in some shape or form and we have all had to grapple with the impact (either directly or indirectly) of this season. Yet, Co-Vid has also presented some incredible opportunities, I know Father God has certainly blessed me in the midst of this storm and I feel like I’ve been in a ‘Heart Rewiring Bootcamp’ during this season! He’s done much within me setting me up and preparing me for the amazing plans I believe He has for me. YET, with everything happening, I’ve found myself almost ‘sitting on my testimonies’ – feeling guilty about sharing the good things happening, feeling as if I too should be riding what is sometimes a very negative tide of emotion. I don’t mean the grieving of loss, or of processing very real pain resulting from really difficult challenges, but the ‘woe is me’ / ‘wallowing in self-pity’ that has sometimes come up and the endless negative coverage in the media… This is a great prompt that rather than ‘guilt-trip’ myself into the negative status-quo, I should buck the trend and chose Jesus, His hope, His perspective and share His goodness, hope, joy and how He is working/blessing so others’ can share in that hope too. Thank you. 🙂

  • Neva Gordon says:

    Pastor Jo
    It is interesting to read your Blog. I sometimes say the negative things instead of having positive
    response/s. Thank you for sharing the prompting of your husband to get the right answer to his question.
    Changing from negative attitude to positive attitude, it has brought so much blessings and praise to God in Christ Jesus. To be negative is sinful, it doesn’t give God the glory. (Ex.15:2)
    Thank you for sharing your negative action to positive.
    Praise God.

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