August 2, 2020 Make a plan
Why are you cast down, O my soul? And why are you disquieted within me? Hope in God; For I shall yet praise Him, the help of my countenance and my God. Psalms 43:5
Point #3 Plan for bad days
As I was preparing to write today’s dose, ironically, I had a bad day. Even though I knew that bad days come sometimes, I didn’t have a plan in place. Oh, nothing bad happened, but I was having an internal struggle. Have you ever had days like that? Days when your energy level was so low and your motivation to move forward was zero? Days when there was nothing wrong, but you still felt uneasy and uninspired? These days will inevitably come, so the best way to combat them is to have a plan ahead of time.
I actually googled planning for a bad day and came up with some good suggestions. It seems that even the world recognizes that you can plan for “bad” days. The suggestion were such things as: Start the day by eating something great because food is a huge part of who you are and how you feel. Listen to your best “pump me up” music. Make a plan to do something you love. Do something to make progress, however small. Over-share gratitude.
While these are good suggestions, and certainly you can use these in your plan, I believe the best way is in today’s scripture. The psalmist says when you are feeling down and uneasy the first thing to do is hope in the God. Psalms 46:1 says God is our refuge and strength and a very present help in time of trouble. God is the first place to go on a bad day. The truth is, God should be the first place we go every day and may avert many bad days if this is daily planned into your schedule. Set aside a time each morning before you are immersed into your day to sit quietly with God to rejuvenate and generate inspiration for the day.
The next thing today’s verse says to do is praise God. Whether its in the form of a song or in being thankful, offer to God the sacrifice of praise. The sacrifice is in the offering when you are not quite feeling it, but by faith, you are thankful and recognize the help and protection God has given you in the past and present time. Hebrews 13:15 & 16 says Therefore, let us offer through Jesus a continual the sacrifice of praise to God, proclaiming our allegiance to his name. And don’t forget to do good and to share with those in need. These are the sacrifices that please God. The sacrifice of praise and doing good for others. These “sacrifices” take your focus off of you and whatever is troubling you at the time. This is good advice.
Lastly, the psalmist says that God is the help of our countenance. It means He lifts us up. This is when it is good to have a list of “God” confessions for make over yourself. Remind yourself of how God sees you in Christ Jesus. Things like:
I am more than a conqueror (Romans 8:37)
He always causes me to triumph (2 Corinthians 2:14)
I am filled with the Holy Spirit (Acts 1:8)
I have been adopted and now have the relationship with God as His child (Romans 8:17)
God hears my prayers and answers them (John 5:15)
He will never leave me or forsake me (Hebrews 13:5)
Jesus loves me in spite of my failures and sins (John 3:16)
God will meet every need I have according to the extent of His riches (Philippians 4:19)
The list is endless and you can make your own declarations that are appropriate for what you are feeling that day. The point is, see yourself as God sees you not as the world does.
Today I want to encourage you to make a plan for the days you are feeling down. Writing down the things you want to accomplish the night before is a good way to start. Make a list of goals for the next day, and then pray God’s strength and inspirations over that list. Then, each day when you get up, have that quiet time with God to: Hope in God, praise God and confess the good things of God over yourself and your day. Then take a scripture or confession with you throughout the day and speak it out loud every time those feelings of doubt and discouragement come. Let God and His Word be the help of your countenance. Having a plan will shorten and eliminate bad days from coming at all.
Today’s scripture reading: Psalms 43