Have you ever noticed that weather reports tend to lead with the chance of BAD weather rather than telling us the glass-half-full version? I mean, really. You never hear, "There's a 70 percent chance that it WON'T rain today!" No. The report usually tells us of the likelihood that it WILL rain, even if it's slight. Why is that?
My new friend Tommy planted that seed in my brain this morning. Who is Tommy, you ask? Tommy Newberry is the author of a daily devotional that I've just started reading - 40 Days to a Joy-Filled Life. It is based on his 4:8 Principle (Philippians 4:8) of shifting our focus to the things that bring us joy rather than dwelling on the stuff that brings us down. That's a really hard thing to do, if you really think about it. It is for me anyway.
I am a worrier. I worry about money, relationships, the future, Auburn football, and a myriad of other issues, most of which I have absolutely no control over. It seems automatic for my brain to go to the places of obsessing about what isn't going right in my life, and what good does that do? I end up just twisting myself into knots and making matters worse. It hasn't worked for me so far, so I'm going to give "living 4:8" a shot.
I'm on Day 3 of 40 and today's devotional is titled "Hundreds of Problems, Millions of Blessings: the Joy of Perspective." The truth is I have WAY more blessings in my life than I have problems. I'd even go as far as to say that's true for most of us. Here are a few things to which I'm going to actively shift my thinking when I feel myself starting to drift over to the worry zone:
- A relationship with God that is growing and changing everyday in deeply meaningful ways.
- My big family filled with people who love and protect me intensely.
- More friends than I deserve who are there for me in every way that I need.
- A career that I love, and a job that feels important and impactful to the people I serve.
- An over abundance of doggy affection.
Look. I'm no Cindy Sunshine, but I'm going to do my best to start thinking more like her than like Debbie Downer.
I am committing this verse to memory today:
Summing it all up, friends, I’d say you’ll do best by filling your minds and meditating on things true, noble, reputable, authentic, compelling, gracious—the best, not the worst; the beautiful, not the ugly; things to praise, not things to curse. (MSG)
- Philippians 4:8
As I closed my book this morning, I decided to check the weather report on the handy dandy app on my iPhone, and what do ya know?!
Wishing you all plentiful sunshine and blessings today and everyday!