The month of January has got something of a bad reputation. Over the years, I’ve heard many people bemoan this particular winter month with its short daylight hours, long nights and shivery days. It’s no surprise that a calculation, first publicised in 2005, designated the third Monday in the month as ‘blue Monday’. An equation was drawn up, taking in factors such as weather, debt levels, salary, time since Christmas and time since failing our new year resolutions. The conclusion was reduced motivation and a general lack of enthusiasm at this time of the year.
I look at all of this as a great reminder not to allow external things to dictate how we process things. After all, if we declare that our trust is in Jesus Christ, then to be overly distracted by the external season doesn’t quite fit! Our faith in Christ fuels the internal, feeding our spirit and lifting our soul.
The apostle Paul gives a clear remedy for combatting external anxiety: he simply declares, ‘Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again; rejoice!’ He goes on to say, ‘Let your gentleness be evident to all. The Lord is near.’(Philippians 4:4-7) Simply put, rejoice, and if it doesn’t seem to work, rejoice again! Couple it by showing your gentleness to everyone, not angry or moody, but rejoicingly gentle! When we get the internal things sorted, the external issues stop being the giants that we make them out to be. So, today, we encourage you to rejoice afresh in God’s faithfulness and put the January blues behind!