Having a hard day? Everyone experiences one occasionally. When those days hit, you have a choice: You can succumb or you can overcome. Consider these three areas when horrible days happen:
- Your Words
Succumb: When you give into difficulties by complaining with friends, whining to family or venting on social media, you allow the problems to grow bigger and stronger. You aren’t contemplating the solution to your problems, you’re simply rehearsing the issues. You’re also weakening your faith by saying—either outright or insinuating—that you can’t trust God with the situations.
Overcome: When you take your concerns to the Lord in prayer or even ask Spirit-led prayer partners or ministers to agree in prayer with you, you’re being proactive. And when you speak the Word over the situations, you are speaking the solutions and proclaiming that God is faithful and can be trusted with whatever you’re facing.
Scriptures to Meditate: Philippians 4:6-7; Ephesians 4:29; Proverbs 18:21
- Your Thoughts
Succumb: When you let your mind run wild with obsessive thoughts or replay bad situations repeatedly, then you are, again, tearing down yourself and your faith. When you fantasize about taking revenge or telling someone off, you’re hurting yourself, not them, because you’re putting your energy toward negative solutions that can’t help solve anything.
Overcome: Take your concerns and experiences to the Lord in prayer. It can also be helpful to journal about the situations while reminding yourself of what the Bible says and allowing the Holy Spirit to speak to you through your journaling time. Music can also be a great tool to help you refocus your mind on the Lord. You can choose something upbeat and spend time dancing before the Lord like David, or you can choose something quiet, contemplative and worshipful.
Scriptures to Meditate: Psalm 19:14; Romans 8:5-6; Philippians 4:8
- Your Actions
Succumb: If you let your flesh take control, then difficult days will only get worse. You’ll risk lashing out in anger or withdrawing, which allows the enemy to wage war against your mind. You may even give into vices like excessive shopping, overeating, overindulging in alcohol or engaging in illicit sex. All of these actions only serve to defeat you and drag you into a heinous cycle of regret and condemnation.
Overcome: When difficult days happen, overcome by, first, turning to the Word and prayer. Get yourself in a right frame of mind by setting your thoughts on the Lord. If you need to burn off pent-up energy, then take a walk, go for a run, hit the gym, work on a hobby, dance it out with praise music or meet a Christian friend for coffee. Choose enjoyable activities that help you refocus your attention on the Lord, that are productive, and that won’t lead to regret.
Scriptures to Meditate: Romans 12:1-2; 2 Timothy 1:7; Colossians 3:17
When tough days come—and they will come—choose to overcome them God’s way—with the wisdom of the Word, the direction of the Holy Spirit, and the comradery of Christian brothers and sisters. It’s the best way to overcome, not succumb, to hard times!