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Just one good dayPosted Friday, July 27, 2012, at 5:20 PM
It seems that a lot of folks have hit a stretch of tough times as of late. I recently heard someone at work say -- "If I could just have one good day." Truth is, I think we can all catch ourselves looking for "one good day" from time to time. I am beginning to think that those good days come as a product of our thinking.
Roman Emperor and philosopher Marcus Aurelius Antonius once said that the world we live in is determined by our thoughts. Ralph Waldo Emerson told us that a man is what he thinks about all day long.
So how do we consistently nurture the right kind of thoughts?
My most important tip for having a good day -- and one I need to put into practice more regularly -- is to start every day with prayer. Sometimes we may not think we have time to pray -- but we need to pray anyway. We need to fill our minds with the love of God and the whole day will be filled with His presence.
I think we should take an inventory of the good things in our lives each morning before we even get out of bed. We could start by remembering the most enjoyable thing that happened to us the day before, or something exciting that we experienced last week. Then we should capture those thoughts and dwell on them for a few minutes and let the good feelings determine our attitude for the rest of the day.
We also need to empty ourselves of doubt, negative thoughts, fear and anxiety. I realize this may be easier said than done, but I believe many people don't realize that we each have control over what goes on in our minds. We don't have to let our minds control us.
Once we have gotten rid of all the bad stuff in our minds -- the "stinking thinking" as some have called it -- we need to fill our minds. If we fail to fill them with "good stuff" something else will surely fill that space. In my humble opinion, prayerful meditation and reading scriptures from the Psalms or any of the four gospels can help fill that void in a positive way.
We can also effect our day by speaking pleasant things to others. If we can start our day in a pleasant manor, we may well have a pleasant day all day long. Even if you have a negative thought, don't speak it. If you speak it you give it life and it may push the pleasantness aside.
If we can get into the practice of starting our days off in a positive fashion, I believe we can all have more good days than bad and that we won't be longing for "just one good day" as often as we do now.
Finally, I would like to share something I read not long ago about a man who had a note taped to the mirror in his bathroom so he would see it every morning while preparing for his day. The note read: "Think a good day; thank a good day; plan a good day; make a good day; pray a good day; and get going."
Sounds like great advice to me.
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Bob Stewart is pastor of Union Baptist Church. His long-running column ranges in topic from matters of faith to observations about life in Saline County, politics and the sights to see in travels throughout America.