Cumberland Times-News


June 30, 2014

Turn away from negative, pray for the positive

— The June 26 article in the Cumberland Times-News, “City’s economic consultants unveil good, bad at study update,” struck a chord.

As president of Cumberland Community Aglow I take part in praying regularly for this region and some of what Kyle Talente (RKG Associates) reported in his study are the same words I have heard spoken in prayer. Talente wrote, “Cumberland’s story is being told by others, and it’s not the right story. From an economic development standpoint, perception is reality.”

He listed goals for our community and two stood out; reverse negative attitudes and move past “the way it is” mentality. We in Cumberland Aglow and the praying churches of this community would shout out a “hip hip hooray” over Talentes’ conclusions and agree that when we turn away from negative mindsets and think and speak life over ourselves and our community this region will shift.

Speakers have traveled from around the world to Cumberland exhorting us of the beauty of Mountain Maryland yet we take it for granted and in turn grumble and speak the negatives. Our mindset is wrong, our perspective is off. Truth is, our life follows our words, our words follow our heart, and from the overflow of the heart our mouth speaks. Not only do we need a new mindset, we need to adjust our speech and we need to gain a new heart for life and people and my prayer is, “Lord, start with me!”     

I heard a rabbi teach on our mindset toward work. He said, “if you have the mindset to serve others through your work, your work will be rewarding” That’s perspective. It is better to give than to receive. Problem is, we are more concerned with what we can obtain than what we can give. Personally, I have had to acquire a new mindset and in that I have found life more rewarding. Extending ourselves to others creates life within us.     

The name Cumberland contains the root of the word cumbersome. Cumbersome means burdensome and oppressive, but the antonym for cumbersome is graceful. I chuckled aloud as I read these definitions because my mindset shifted when I met the “grace” of God.

I would like to rally the troops of this region. If you believe in the God of Abraham, Issac and Jacob, if you believe in God’s Son Jesus Christ, then it is time for you to rise up in this land and declare God’s grace, favor and blessing, it is time to redirect your tongue and speak life over yourself and your neighbor, it is time to do away with thinking what can my neighbor do for me and step into the golden rule of what can I do for my neighbor.

Cumberland Aglow believes and prays that we, the people of the tri-state, will join together and make our requests known to God for a shift, a transition in hearts, minds and speech. It is God’s will to create a region where his grace, his love, his blessing can flow and that his name can be honored. Only God can change this land, therefore we should ask him to do so and work willingly with him to do it.

In closing I pray, Lord, purify our hearts and our minds for our good and your glory. Take our land, cleanse it, heal it, make it the land of grace that you so long to see flourishing. Shift us, Lord, into that new way of thinking, speaking and responding to one another; a way that brings glory to your great name. Amen.

Susan Mason

Ridgeley, W.Va.

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