A story I like is that about the gathering in the elevator at nine o'clock on a Monday morning. Here come the business people, the executives and their clerical staff, with their Monday morning blues, looking glum and grumpy. The elevator operator, however, is bouncy and full of good cheer. He greets everyone with a wide grin and a hearty "Good morning! What a fine day!" Finally someone who can't stand all this cheerfulness so early in the morning asks, "What are you so happy about? What's so great about this day?" To which the operator replies with enthusiasm, "I ain't never lived this day before!"

That's what the imagination can do for you. So it behooves us to guard our imaginations, to train them, to encourage them to feed on inspiring and hopeful fare. In the Epistle to the Philippians we read: "Whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is gracious, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things" (Philippians 4:8).

Beatrice Bruteau, Radical Optimism