My daughter has been very negative lately. She hates math. She hates her school. She hates . . .
I have told her that happiness is a choice. Being positive is a choice. She can either hate everything and be unhappy or she can choose to be cheerful and to make the best of what she has. Yesterday, in one of my lecture pep-talks, she told me that I complain also. I had to pause and think, “Am I being an example of negativity? Am I complaining instead of being thankful?”
Part of me says that she is saying that to excuse her own sin of being unthankful and cranky. But part of me knows that I must make sure to set forward an example that always gives thanks. Not just because she needs to see it, but because it is a Christian’s right response to the wonderful God that we have.
The last couple of days as we drove into school, I have read a Psalm and a Proverb out loud in the car. The praise and thankfulness that is so prevalent in Psalms helps me to focus on what a great God I have and how I should be praising Him for His goodness and for the wonderful God that He is.
Consider some of these verses:
- O Lord, our Lord, how excellent is thy name in all the earth! who hast set thy glory above the heavens. Psalm 8:1
I will praise thee, O Lord, with my whole heart; I will shew forth all thy marvellous works. I will be glad and rejoice in thee: I will sing praise to thy name, O thou most High. Psalm 9:1
- Sing praises to the Lord, which dwelleth in Zion: declare among the people his doings. Psalm 9:11
We could find so many more verses that command us to praise the Lord! When we consider all that He has done for us, we naturally want to praise Him. So my challenge for myself is to consider all the wonderful things He has done for me and to praise Him in those moments when I might want to say something negative. I also want to verbalize the good things He has done in a natural way.
I will bless the Lord at all times: his praise shall continually be in my mouth. Psalm 34:1
When I consider what He has done, I will share it with those around me. It will be good for me; it is what God desires; and it may be catchy! My prayer is that those around me will see that I am happy and content in Christ. No, my life is not perfect; but my Savior is perfect. As my children watch what I have, I want them to want to be happy in Christ too. But it is a choice. Am I going to choose to bless the Lord and continually praise Him or will I get my eyes off of Him and onto my problems? Let’s choose to magnify Him and to keep our daily trials in the right perspective!
O magnify the Lord with me, and let us exalt his name together. Psalm 34:3
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