This past Sunday I spoke about Authentic Emotions. We explored the story of David, how he went from living in the Kings palace to hiding in a cave afraid for his life. We may not be experiencing the same circumstances as David, but with Thanksgiving and Christmas right around the corner I can imagine many people are dealing with some of the same emotions that David experienced in the cave.
When we focus on the “what ifs” or “potential” negatives that may come from a situation, we actually create our own version of reality, which in our brains leads us to sadness, and sometimes other negative feelings.
David experienced anger, distress, regret, complaints, despair and other negative emotions, and he even wrote about it throughout the Psalms, but he always found a way to shift his focus back to God’s mercy, loving-kindness and goodness (Psalm 13). This created a positive reality for David—despite his circumstances—and impacted his emotional health as well!
One of the New Testament writers, Paul, says “Do not be anxious about anything. Instead, in every situation, through prayer and petition with thanksgiving, tell your requests to God. And the peace of God that surpasses all understanding will guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus.−Philippians 4:6-7 (NET)
The answer for anxiety and worry is prayer and petition, with thanksgiving (a positiveemotion). The root of anxiety and worry is faith in the wrongthings, or at least a temporary focus on the wrong things. But what is the root of joy and contentment? THANKSGIVING.
Thanksgiving isn’t a holiday, it’s a way of life that leads to emotional health. Therefore, go and DO thanksgiving this week!