This morning during my quiet time I was reading from Oswald Chambers “My Utmost For His Highest” and scanning through his book I stumbled upon this devotion and I couldn’t help but laugh (and squirm) at these profound words: “There are certain things we must not pray about – moods, for instance. Moods never go by praying, moods go by kicking.” Oswald Chambers
He goes on to say that “A mood nearly always has its seat in the physical condition, not in the moral. It is a continual effort not to listen to the moods which arise from a physical condition; never submit to them for a second.”
You know, when he’s right he’s right!
I’ll be honest, I’ve spent a lot of time fretting lately. I know, I know…nothing good comes from worry. I wish I could blame this “condition” on my parents…my mother was a natural worrier, but I know better than to say this is a genetic thing. No. It’s me. And when I worry and fret my mood tends to spiral downwards too.
To say we’ve had a challenging several months, would be an understatement. You know the expression: “when it rains, it pours”?…we’ve had a deluge of things happen to us…not a bucket load of woes all at once, but irritating little drips that keep dripping and dripping like an annoying faucet you can’t fix or turn off. I won’t go into details, but I will say that I’ve been spending a lot of time praying that the Lord would reach down from heaven and like some cosmic plumber turn the faucet off and make the dripping stop!
I have also spent, what Oswald would say, a considerable amount of wasteful time feeling a little sorry for myself and praying about…yeah, you guessed it…my mood. I suppose it is part of the human condition when things don’t go exactly according to plan, that you get a little down. I tend to play the blame game, or talk about “what ifs”, or “let’s escape all this and go live in the smallest town in Saskatchewan where no one knows us and pump gas and eat licorice and read comic books all day”…I’ve been watching too many Corner Gas reruns…but you get my drift!
Oswald Chambers says, “We have to take ourselves by the scruff of the neck and shake ourselves, and we will find that we can do what we said we could not.” That doesn’t sound a bit like my idea of trying to run away, or wasting time worrying myself into a frenzy. On the contrary, it’s more like a kick in the pants.
I needed a good mood kicking this morning. Thanks Oswald!
Do Not Worry
25 “Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothes? 26 Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they? 27 Can any one of you by worrying add a single hour to your life?
28 “And why do you worry about clothes? See how the flowers of the field grow. They do not labor or spin. 29 Yet I tell you that not even Solomon in all his splendor was dressed like one of these. 30 If that is how God clothes the grass of the field, which is here today and tomorrow is thrown into the fire, will he not much more clothe you—you of little faith? 31 So do not worry, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ 32 For the pagans run after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them. 33 But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well. 34 Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own. (Matthew 6:25-34)
I find the problem with praying about moods isn’t that God can’t fix it but that it’s a pious way of wallowing. I can better kick a mood by *doing* something Godly rather than complaining/wishing/praying about my condition.
Is that what Chambers is getting at kind of? (I’m not that familiar with his writing.)
Pingback: Whine Kicking « Lynn Dove's Journey Thoughts
Pingback: A Good “Mood” Kicking Required | It's Just Me…