Focusing Your Thoughts on Truth
Baby, it’s cold outside! And, for many of us, snow continues to fall even though we may be ready for some warmer weather. It’s no wonder that, at this time of year, we can easily slip into a serious case of the winter blues.
Facing the cold, short, dark days of winter isn’t easy. One way to ride through the rough spell is to simply hunker down, bury our heads under the covers and wish fervently for spring. But as Christians we have a better choice to consider – lifting our eyes to God, calling out to Him with our needs, and anticipating His answers to taking care of ourselves no matter the circumstances (including an unwelcome weather forecast).
But how do we do that when our own efforts have failed and our energy is depleted? We can learn how to practice faithful self care by turning to the Word and seeking God’s wisdom. No day is so long or dark that the light of His truth cannot penetrate.
The Bible is full of stories of people who were down in the dumps and discouraged. One example is David who, in this instance, was weary of the lies his enemies told about him. In Psalm 5:1-2 NASB, David cried out to God saying, “Give ear to my words, O Lord, consider my groaning. Heed the sound of my cry for help, my King and my God, for to You I pray.”
David’s first step in fighting the blues was to cry out to God. He knew God loved him and would hear his cry for help. Our first step should be the same—cry out to your heavenly Father, tell Him how you feel, and rejoice in knowing that He hears you and cares about you. God wants what's best for you, and that might mean taking some time to care for yourself.
Immediately after calling out to God, David takes a key next step in battling his discouragement—he anticipated God’s answer: “In the morning, O Lord, You will hear my voice. In the morning I will order my prayer to You and eagerly watch.” Psalm 5:3 NASB.
David prayed with confidence, expecting God to answer. The apostle John also reminds us of the importance of praying with confidence. 1 John 5:14 NIV states, “This is the confidence we have in approaching God: that if we ask anything according to his will, he hears us.”
Calling out to our Father and praying with expectation packs a powerful one/two punch. When the days are long and bleak, a natural reaction is to focus on the negative, losing sight of all we have in Christ. Let’s learn from David. Instead of looking down, focusing on his problems, David looked up and was reminded of God’s love and compassion.
Like David, sometimes all we need is a new perspective. One way we can gain a new perspective is to read our favorite passages in a new translation.
Filling our home or workplace with Christian home decor items that feature inspirational messages is another way to help us stay grounded and focused on God. And, sometimes even wearing a piece of Scripture-inscribed jewelry can turn your thoughts around when they go astray.
Chances are you have a friend or know of someone who also is fighting the winter blues. Share this article with them by clicking on the icons to your left, or send them an encouraging Ecard. Remind them that God hears them and loves them no matter the season, and that self care is not selfish.
The next time you feel yourself sliding into a funk, try David’s approach. Call out to God, tell Him your needs, and thank Him in advance for His answers. Making this a daily practice means the blues won’t hang around for long.
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