Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Even on the Bad Days

Yesterday was a very difficult day for me.  The beginning half of the day wasn't going my way and I was in such a bad mood and angry over what seemed like everything.

As I was folding laundry, the thought hit me, "What makes me think that God is only good or for me or in control when life is going how I want and the days are filled with lovely things I enjoy, fun times, and much laughter...consisting of what makes for a pleasant time; one without any hardship?  In the Christian walk, we are called to trials.  We are called to tough situations with the end result being one of being further sanctified, like gold being purified when it goes through the fire."

Oh, life.  Sometimes when everything is going well and we are on the mountaintops of life, we often think, "I am secure.  Life is good.  I can do this forever.  God's blessings toward me are rich and I enjoy living."

And yet at times we feel overwhelmed or plans don't go our way and we feel upset, easily frustrated, short-tempered, and willing to be rude to anyone who gets in our way, we must realize and consciously remember that this world is not our permanent home.  Yes, that sounds so clich√© and like I am speaking Christianese to you, but let us be reminded that as believers and followers of the Lord Jesus Christ, we are called to be in the world but not of it.  We are called to suffering, persecution (to whatever degree God permits), hardship, and situations, people, and circumstances that would break us had we not trusted in the Lord and committed the day or circumstance to Him, asking Him to do the necessary work on our hearts, build our character through it, and teach us the lessons He intends for us to learn.  If God is a good God (and His word clearly says He is), and if He only and always has our BEST interest at heart, why do we kick and scream and complain and grumble to get our way?  Why not submit to God's refining process and look forward to the growth He will bring to us as we step out and live God honoring lives in the midst of whatever is currently going on?

Here are a few helpful tips:

  • Remember the quote, "Every day may not be good, but there is something good in every day."  This is a great reminder that even when things are not going as we had planned or hoped for, there is still an abundance of reasons for what we may praise God for.

  • Commit anger, frustration, hurt feelings, sadness, disappointment, loss, and mixed up emotions to God in prayer, saying, "God, I know to what great lengths I will go if I continue to dwell on such thoughts and feelings (possibly viewing pornography, engaging in masturbation, self-injury, overeating, or overspending, to name a few...) and I ask that You would help me to keep the right perspective in this circumstance.  Please help me to remember that I can rest in You no matter how the day goes because even though this wasn't my plan of choice, You are allowing it.  So enable me to read Your word and keep a Godward mind-set."

  • Read a few chapters of the Bible in one of your favorite books.  (I prefer the Psalms or Proverbs)

  • Take time to listen to music you enjoy, call a friend or family member to take your mind off of the situation, or go for a walk.  You can exercise, write a letter to someone you have been meaning to write to, or look for free stuff on Craigslist.com (I promise you will get a really good laugh at some of the stuff people are giving away!)

What are a few ways you deal with stress?  How are you learning to trust and rest in God lately?

I care to know.  Do share!

You may write at:  EmmaJoyBlog@gmail.com


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