Gray Days

masterpieceHeavens, sprinkle from above, and let the skies shower righteousness. Let the earth open up so that salvation will sprout and righteousness will spring up with it. I, Yahweh, have created it. (Isaiah 45:8)

Ponder It.
What do you like about gray, rainy days?
What do you not like about gray, rainy days?
When have you found hope through a difficult situation, even if you couldn’t see it until it was over?

Receive It.
What happens when you have a “gray day,” as if a little black rain cloud is hanging over your head wherever you go? Your mood affects everything around you—how you see things, how you respond to people, what others see in you, and so on. But just because you feel gray doesn’t mean you don’t have any color in your life. Our feelings don’t determine who we are or what we can do to help others. We need to let God decide those things.

We need to stop expecting God to chase away all of our grays. We need rainy days in our lives, too. Rain brings nourishment to things that need to grow. Rain is cleansing. It replenishes reserves, especially from those hot, busy seasons. We need light to grow, but we also need rain. It all works together. We don’t have to feel as if we’re victims of our surroundings and circumstances. We get to decide how we face, accept, and overcome each morning, no matter what the emotional and situational weather might be.

God gave us emotions, not to determine life but to enhance it. Our experiences are richer because of our emotions. We don’t like every emotion, but that’s often because we can’t see it in the context of who God is and what He’s doing. When we take a step back and see God as an emotional God who gifted us with His emotions when He created us, we stop defining anger, joy, envy, and peace by our own standards and look for His instead. Instead of our own filter of limited experiences, we filter our experiences through Him. What we get as a result is much more pure than looking at things our own way.

Live It.
What emotion are you feeling right now? Even if it’s challenging, choose a word to describe it. Be specific. We most often identify our emotions as sad, glad, or mad (or some variation of one of them), because they’re the most familiar. But when we dig into the reality of our emotions, we find frustration, anticipation, surprise, disgust, apprehension, and so on. The better we can identify our emotions, the better we can rely on God through them. Take “emotion checks” throughout the day.

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