Thursday, May 28, 2009

I Am ... joyful

I look awfully washed out in this photo. But I am feeling REALLY sick right now, so maybe I AM that pastey white. LOL!!!

More often than not you will catch me laughing. I will admit that there are times when I look at circumstances around me instead of on things above, and that makes me cranky and moody and just a horrible person to be around. I sadly take it out on the kids and my husband.

How come it is so EASY to hurt those we love? We put on a totally different face around others. Or we just withdrawal. We use the "if you don't have anything nice to say, don't say anything at all" when dealing with others, but with those we are closest to, we feel we have the right to be forward with them and use "honesty" as the guise by which we say mean and hurtful things.

But I am choosing to look at the positive. :D While I do have those bad and nasty times, more often than not, I am smiling, laughing, or making someone else laugh. There is SO MUCH to take JOY in: God's creation, His Son, my husband, my children, my family, my friends ... one cannot HELP but feel blessed and happy.

Why do we chose to focus on the negative? It doesn't glorify God. And it certainly does not make one feel any better.

And not only that, but what kind of example does it set to others when we are to be examples of Christ? "Well if that person is negative and putting themselves down all the time, I don't WANT to be a Christian!" Christ died to set us FREE. Why do we keep ourselves in bondage to negative thoughts rather than taking every thought captive to the obedience of Jesus?

God never said it was easy nor a one time thing. We are to renew our minds DAILY! We are bombarded with media and past teachings/images. DAILY we are to take up our cross. DAILY we are to renew our minds. EVERY thought to be in obedience. FREEDOM.

I know the times I am most happy are the times when I AM focusing on the positive. And isn't focusing on the positive the same as renewing our mind? Taking every thought captive? :D

My beloved was reading a blog that put it like this:

You and your day are on a scale. On one side are all the accomplishments you have done. Everything you have done right. Everything that went right. On the other side is everything you didn't accomplish that you feel guilty about. Everything that went wrong. And everything you messed up on.

At the end of the day, the side which has the most on it will determine how you feel about the day. If you accomplished more and had more things go right, you will feel happy and joyful. However, if you had more things go wrong and had an unproductive day, you will not feel joyful.

I have noticed that when I think back on the days recently where I felt it was a great day, I notice that is true. It wasn't perfect, but I accomplished more on those days than on days where I felt that I was a failure - days where nothing seemed to go right.

So again, I choose to renew my mind. Yes, I am a sinner. Yes, I have my (many many many) faults. But I tend to have more smiles and joy and laughter that weigh my joyful side to be stronger. :) Renewing my mind, taking thoughts captive to obedience to Jesus, not to mention DOING things (there really is something about having idle hands that drains joy!) and I am joyful. It is a mystery to me how to be joyful, how I can be joyful in God. But it is a fruit of the Spirit that we can cultivate. And I am so thankful for the lessons He has taught me. Now I pray for the strength and ability to keep them applied daily! :D

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