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No matter the weather, outside or internally, we can choose to make the most of it, with the Lord’s help. His will is that we would be joyful in all things. Have a joy-filled day!

Eternal Perspectives by Sally Bair

Change the Atmosphere

Because of our summer drought, many of us haven’t had to cancel outdoor events like in some years. Perhaps we all can remember days when one minute the sun shone brightly and the next minute a dark cloud appeared, causing everyone to wonder if the weather would halt festivities.

Weather changes can affect our mood and emotional well-being, too, faster than we can say, “Rain, rain, go away, come again some other day.” Those who find it hard to follow a Plan B can count on a miserable life. But we don’t have to be enslaved by the weather. We mid-Westerners learn, at least to some extent, to accept weather changes, even in snowy winters.

In some ways, our emotions are like the weather. We have our ups and downs, our cold and hot times, our stormy and calm times. Unlike the weather, we can choose to change the atmosphere of our emotions. We can decide to accept the sudden, miserable rain of events with joy, knowing it will help us grow even as plants grow when watered with rain.

Joyful acceptance of harsh weather isn’t the only way we can grow. We can take action. In a real storm, we tend to flee for cover. In an emotional storm, we can make other choices. We can soothe our anger with a prayer and a kind word to the offender. We can choose to focus on the good rather than our misery. We can decide to fulfill a God-given dream rather than listen to someone’s scoffing words about it. We can stand strong in the face of evil rather than run away in fear.

Unlike the weather, the atmosphere of our hearts can be changed by decisive action. Too often we let our moods control our thoughts, words, and deeds. I’ve read that when we fail to fulfill our purposes in life by putting off necessary action—whether to change jobs, heal a relationship or help someone in need—we become fatigued. Like a blown-up balloon, our energy begins to develop a slow leak.

When Jesus healed people, He often told them to change the atmosphere. He told the lame man, “Take up your bed and walk,” rather than remain in a hopeless state. He told the man with the withered hand to stretch it out even as it hung useless. He would have us act, also. “The Lord is the God of knowledge; and by Him actions are weighed.” (1 Samuel 2:3)

Lord, keep us from fear and insecurity, from lacking in faith, so we can take positive action to fulfill Your purposes in our lives. In Jesus’ name, amen.

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