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March 29, 2016

When The Negative Voices Scream Louder Than The Positive Ones

What do you do?

I find myself in a place where it feels sometimes as the world is crashing in around me and yet there is that glimmer of hope that says, “things are going to get easier, things are going to get brighter”. Actually those exact words are from the song, O-O-H Child by The Five Stairsteps that was in my head when I awoke 6 months ago. I hadn’t heard that song in years and felt great comfort from awakening with this song in my mind. These were words of inspiration to me after mourning the loss of two babies in utero. This song in my head gave me hope. It came to me that morning that my son and I were leaving to visit family in western New York that would ultimately give me so much inspiration for the next steps in my life.

So what happened to that? Where are the easier days? Where are the brighter days? Still coming….

Sometimes it is hard, extremely hard, to wait when you feel like you have waited for a long, long time for things to get easier. It’s hard to not allow the optimism and the hope to fade when you don’t see those days coming yet. There are glimpses but still out of reach. You hope. You pray. You wonder how many times this has happened. Times you were full of hope and believed for a bright future but you are now realizing that you seem to be hoping and waiting constantly.

How long is too long to wait? I guess we can ask Abraham and Sarah that. They wondered the same and even took the hope of the promise into their own hands when they conceived Ishmael. I’m trying so desperately not to do that but I’m certain I’ve wandered from the perfect plan more than once. Deep down inside I know I was created for so much more than I am currently fulfilling in my life. When will that begin? When will the promises of all God has for me be accomplished? Is allowing this to drag me down keeping me from all God has? Is my lack of faith preventing the promise?

How about the latest Christian movie, Miracles From Heaven. The mother in that story lost her faith in the face of what seemed an impossible situation with her daughter. Yet ultimately God healed her daughter miraculously. Does giving up hope for a situation mean God will never bring about the miracle? Obviously that is not the case in this true story of hope. There are so many questions and unfortunately much condemnation by others in the church that your faith is not great enough or that you are sinning and that is why the healing or miracle hasn’t taken place. Or simply that you just need to trust; you just need more faith! Well, let me tell you this, I am sick of those people!!! And I know that I’m not alone. I actually quite enjoyed the part in the film showing the ignorance of some Christians to place blame on the person who has not yet been healed. How’s that for compassion and love? Not Christ-like in my opinion, but what do I know?

In a world where there is so much negativity and greed and corruption it is hard to remain positive. So what does God’s word say to focus on? Philippians 4:8. I learned this as a young girl in Missionettes. My mom, who is now in her forever heavenly body, was one of my Missionette teachers and for that I am truly and forever grateful. We were taught to memorize this scripture as follows,

 

“Whatsoever things are

TRUE,

Whatsoever things are

HONEST,

Whatsoever things are

JUST,

Whatsoever things are

PURE,

Whatsoever things are

LOVELY,

Whatsoever things are of

GOOD REPORT;

If there be any virtue, and if there be any praise,

Think on these things Philippians 4:8”

 

I find that I need to check my thoughts and see if they pass the Philippians 4:8 test. Is it true? It is honest? Is it just? Is it pure? It is lovely? Is it a good report? And if I cannot answer YES to these then I best NOT THINK ON IT!

Wow! That seems incredibly easy and freeing! Now to put that into practice. I am making the conscious decision to think on ONLY things that are TRUE, HONEST, JUST, PURE, LOVELY, AND OF GOOD REPORT. I’m sure I won’t be perfect and I’ve worked on training my brain in the past however, sometimes we get stuck on cycles in our minds possibly due to past traumas or abuse that can derail our thinking but I am encouraging you to get on the Philippians 4:8 bandwagon with me and test every thought. After all, we are instructed in scripture to take every thought captive. This is an active job. If we allow our minds to wander, wander they will and you may not like where they take you. Get your thoughts back on track TODAY and put them to the Philippians 4:8 test!