Testing Positive

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A week ago Daughter Jo and family had plans… then at the beginning of the week they all tested positive for covid. Their plans were turned upside down. Feeling unwell and necessary isolation has changed this week and next week for them…

Luke’s account of the Jesus story starts with two ordinary women… Elizabeth who couldn’t have a baby – she was too old, and her cousin Mary who shouldn’t have a baby – she was young and not yet married. There’s visits from angels, prophetic words, famous prayers…

I know they didn’t have pregnancy tests then. But Elizabeth and Mary would both have tested positive.

Testing positive may be good news. I failed my first driving test but passed the second. In school or music examinations I passed (or failed!) with different grades. A positive test may be just passing… or passing well.

Testing positive may be bad news – the test for cancer or covid… Enough said.

Some tests give information. The ‘Myers-Briggs’ personality test might tell me that I’m extrovert or introvert, judger or perceiver…  Children might have a reading or maths test; they might be tested for autism or dyslexia… A positive test gives better understanding of strengths or needs.

I like the idea of testing positive on a ‘grumpy old man’ test… but those who would qualify don’t need a test to prove it.

Dan Walker concludes his accounts of ‘Remarkable People’ by speaking of ‘…the determination of individuals to make things better and not allow negativity and hate to eat away and destroy them. They are struggling but they are not failing…’

‘For some the battleground is grief, for others it’s illness, persecution, stress, family breakdown, death, abuse… it’s possible to be broken and brilliant at the same time.’

It’s possible to test positive for both brokenness and brilliance!

On Gardeners’ World last night Monty Don introduced us to a daffodil called ‘Yellow Cheerfulness’. I think I’d like to be tested positive for that!

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