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“I am utterly bowed down and prostrate; all the day I go about mourning” (Psalm 38:6).
Do you ever feel that way? Like the weight of the world is on your shoulders? There are days when I feel like a jinx. Everything I touch goes haywire. I wait for the next shoe to fall, and the next, and the next – as if a centipede was walking above me.
It seems the Psalmist had those days as well. In verse 8 he complains, “I am feeble and crushed; I groan because of the tumult of my heart.” Talk about being oppressed, and depressed.
But, he doesn’t go on whining throughout this Psalm. He keeps declaring through all that happens, God is there. God hears and he has faith God will respond. “But for you, O Lord, do I wait; it is you, O Lord my God, who will answer” (vs.15).
A few weeks ago, my day started out as one of those days. But instead of expecting bad, I stopped. I said aloud to the ceiling in my bathroom, “Stop this devil. You will not steal my joy today.” When I dropped one of my last two earring fasteners in the sink, I laughed and said, “Nice try. Not working.” It stuck to the side and didn’t go down the drain. Two more things tried to go awry. I just laughed and said, “Really? Still trying?” The rest of the day went smooth as silk.
What changed? My attitude. My mother had a plaque on her fridge that said “We can’t change the direction of the wind but we can adjust our sails.” We can choose to see His mercies new every morning, or be bowed to the ground and only see our feet trudging along. We can choose to be blessed children of the Almighty, or have a woe-is-me pity party. The Psalmist over and over, Psalm after Psalm, ends up choosing the first. Slowly, I am learning to do the same.
Questions: Who will you let steal your joy today? Who will you let restore it?
About the Author Julie Cosgrove