When you wake up in the morning, what thoughts roam through your mind? Are you filled with a pessimistic outlook that provokes anxiety, doubt, or sadness? Or do you arise with a lively, ready-to-start-the-day attitude, trusting in the Lord?
Typically, the way you start your day greatly determines the quality of the rest of it. An optimistic view does wonders for your soul and for those around you; a negative attitude creates further unhappiness. Your approach to daily life either works for you or against you — and it’s a decision God allows you to make for yourself.
"This is the day the Lord has made. We will rejoice and be glad in it." Psalm 118:24 (NLT)
Here are a few joy-stealers that can quickly rob you of a glad heart and a positive outlook.
- A complaining spirit hinders God from accomplishing all He can in a believer’s life.
- A comparing spirit produces jealousy and covetousness.
- A condemning spirit loads much undue guilt and shame upon a believer, which is a work of the enemy.
- A cluttered life brings much restlessness to one’s inner and outer life.
- A crushed spirit brings a sense of hopelessness. It can enter one’s life for various reasons, such as facing a loss or a challenge, or suffering from clinical depression. Regardless of the cause, God seeks to restore the brokenhearted (Psalm 34:18).
How do you switch off these joy-stealers and turn on a positive attitude? Here are some ways to help you reclaim your joy in the Lord and your cheerfulness of heart.
1. Confess Sin
This allows you to experience the forgiveness of your sins and permits refreshing times with God to flow again (Acts 3:19). Confession is a vital part of dealing with a complaining or critical spirit and any other known sin.
2. Cultivate Gladness
Be happy when God blesses others and rejoice with them (Romans 12:15-16). Be willing to give others a helping hand.
3. Confidence in God
Don’t allow the enemy to bring you down when God is lifting you to higher grounds. There is no condemnation for those who are in Christ (Romans 8:1-2). Be diligent to start your day with Him, having a positive mindset and gladness in your heart.
4. Cut Back
Trim back on commitments that you don't feel God is asking you to make. Delight yourself in the Lord (Psalm 37:4) and ask Him to make known what matters most. Be mindful that the joy of the Lord is within you (Psalm 28:7), not in people, places, position, or achievements.
5. Consider Seeking Help
God’s desire is for you to be whole in body, mind, soul, and spirit (Psalm 31:7). If your spirit is crushed, it may be wise to seek professional help so you can be healed and gladly proceed forward in life.
6. Change Your Thinking, Count Your Blessings, Continuously Pray
Cultivating a positive mindset and thankful heart, and praying throughout the day will allow you to rejoice and be glad in it (Philippians 4:6-9).