Suffering from January Blues? Some timely advice about it from God’s Word
1. Switch your focus.
At the beginning of another year of work and responsibility, when the festive season is long gone, the bright lights packed away, we tend to concentrate on all the hard stuff that lies in front of us – months of it stretching out into the year ahead. We may be deeply concerned at the world around us, and some of the trends we see.
But God’s Word says, focus on a whole different set of things – “... whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable – if anything is excellent or praiseworthy – think about such things.”
So instead of looking of all the grind, and the possible disappointments (and disappointing people!) we should look towards the things and people showing themselves to be pure, noble, standing for what is right... and it will change our way of thinking.
2. No need to be fearful about the future.
In January we can look ahead at possible difficulties which may occur in the year – health problems for us or someone close to us, job insecurity or family problems. We can see ourselves as vulnerable, even alone, with problems too big for us to cope with.
But the Bible assures us the reality is different – “The Lord himself goes before you and will be with you: he will never leave you or forsake you. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged.”
We’re not on our own facing things that are about to come at us – our Lord is going in front of us and he’s not going to go away and leave us on own – doesn’t that make you feel better?
3. God has a new song for you, and he will lift you up again.
Singing may be the last thing on your mind if you’re feeling low, but there’s a powerful prescription in God’s Word to change the chemicals in your body and lift you up again – it’s praise.
In Psalm 40 we read about God turning to us in response to our cry – and what does he do next?
The psalmist answers that question, “He lifted me out of the slimy pit, out of the mud and mire, he set my feet upon a rock and gave me a firm place to stand. He put a new song in my mouth, a hymn of praise to our God.”
We think about praise as something we give to God, but actually we find especially if we praise him even when we don’t feel like it, we actually begin to feel better. It’s not God’s will for us to be down and depressed – he wants to lift us up again. He’ll even give us a new song to sing.