Mind and Mood
Our moods aren’t random. We may think they are; they flow in and out, up and down, back and forth, with apparent ease and little pattern. But our emotional state at any given moment isn’t dictated by chance or even by discernible circumstances. It’s determined by our focus. Always.
Our focus can certainly be related to circumstances, but it isn’t dependent on them. In every situation, we have a choice of gazing at its downside or its upside. We’ve seen how Paul looked at his imprisonment, contentious rivals, and his upcoming life-or-death verdict as somehow working for good. He even spent one painful night in prison praising God, and a miracle happened. If he could find meaning and hope in those dire circumstances, we certainly can in ours. And if we want to be emotionally whole, we have to.
Whenever you find yourself in an unpleasant mood, look at your focus. It’s probably fixed on some unpleasant aspect of an unpleasant situation. It doesn’t have to be. There are alternatives. God promises to work all things together for the good of those who love him and are called according to his purposes. So whatever it takes, find the good. Gaze at it. Thank him for his goodness, however it’s going to play out. And your mood will surely follow.