Have you ever found yourself in the presence of a person that regularly focuses on the problems in their life with negative statements like:
This is just my luck (don’t expect positive things)
Go figure, of course this would happen to me (expects bad things)
I have bad news, imagine that… (sarcasm)
_______ (fill in the blank) will never change (making negative assumptions)
I’m not as talented as ___________ (negative comparisons)
This ________(person, situation, event) makes me scream (the desire to blame others and be a victim)
I often tell my kids that their friends will be like elevators in their lives; they will either bring you up or take you down. Negative people are like elevators that can take you down into the pits of life. Recently I was with a person like this and she was complaining about an upcoming medical procedure. She asked me for help to overcome her fear about the procedure. Here’s a few bullet points on what I shared with her:
Change the phrase ‘I have to’ about the procedure to ‘I get to’, and thank God that you live in a country that has wonderful medical facilities and that you are able to get help there.
Praise God that there are tests that can be done for your condition, and that there is likely a cure for it.
Focus on being thankful in all circumstances throughout the process. It was at this point that she said, “I try to be thankful all the time, but it doesn’t work. Like I’ve been very intentional that whenever I start thinking about my procedure I start to look around and be thankful for the sunshine, things in nature, and things like that.”
When God commands us in 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18 ESV, to, “Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you”, He does not mean for us to give thanks for other things that are worthy of praise, like His providing us with sunshine— if you’re facing a scary medical procedure. Being thankful for nature is a good thing and it blesses God when we give Him thanks for sunshine or nature. However, God wants us to learn to be thankful for the very things that we may not realize to be thankful for in the midst of all of our circumstances, including the trials we face in life. He wants us to give thanks in ALL circumstances! So, for example, what could a person be thankful for in the midst of a scary medical procedure? God asks us to find the one thing if that’s all there is to be thankful for within the situation you are facing and focus on that with your thoughts, words and actions. If you struggle to find even one thing to be thankful for in your situation, you can always begin by thanking God that you have Him and that He will never leave you or forsake you. I personally would like to lovingly challenge you if you are struggling to be thankful in any area of your life to write down 5 specific things that you can be thankful about regarding that very situation. Need help? Contact us and we will help you to create a list to focus on for your particular situation.
In His Love,