‘I decided to forget my complaints, to put away my sad face and be cheerful.’ Job 9:27 NLT
Let’s begin by acknowledging that sometimes life is hard. And some of us have it harder than others. That’s why the Bible says there is ‘a time to cry and a time to laugh.’ (Ecclesiastes 3:4 NLT) But what if you just keep ‘crying’ about life? How can you reduce the strain and drain produced by negative self-talk? Here are three ways:
(1) Cut and paste. Train yourself to recognise negative inner chatter the minute it starts and delete it immediately. If you have to, take a chainsaw to it. If it helps, make a ‘time out’ signal with your hands as a physical reminder to yourself. But don’t stop there. Replace those negative thoughts with Scriptural self-talk. ‘Whoever guards his mouth and tongue keeps his soul from troubles.’ (Proverbs 21:23 NKJV)
(2) Tweak your tone. You know how the doctor says, ‘This may sting a little,’ as he jabs a needle into your arm? Borrow his technique and reduce big ugly scar-for-life wordage to smaller, unintimidating blemish terms. ‘Impossible’ is a brick wall compared to ‘this may take some work’. Wouldn’t you rather tackle a project that’s ‘challenging’ rather than ‘unmanageable’?
(3) Be your own BFF (Blessed Friend Forever). Using your BFF voice, intentionally over-dub that negative droning voice inside you. Speak to yourself like you would to your very best friend. The Bible says, ‘David encouraged himself in the Lord his God.’ (1 Samuel 30:6 KJV)
Reboot your mind. Reprogramme your thoughts. There’s power in God’s Word. So, whatever He says about you, start saying the same thing and watch your life change for the better.
SoulFood: Ezek 20–21, Luke 19: 28–40, Ps 111, Pr 19:18–20
The Word for Today is authored by Bob and Debby Gass and published under licence from UCB International Copyright 2023