Originally published Monday, 14 April 2014.
I have chosen to go on a negativity fast, and wanted to ask if you would join me?
Recently, God brought to my attention that I am focusing on the negative, instead of His many blessings and promises. I read in Jesus Calling that "Eve focused on the one fruit she couldn't have rather than being thankful for the many good things freely available."
When I read that about Eve, I was convicted because I have recently experienced God's blessings in new and fresh ways -- and yet. Yet. I am still having a hard time with certain issues.
I am sure you can relate.
Maybe everything is going right at work, but not at home. Maybe things at church and home are great, but not at work. Maybe everything is right everywhere, but in your home and relationships.
I have no idea which areas you are currently experiencing God's blessings, and which areas you are not.
"When you focus on what you don't have or on situations that displease you, your mind also becomes darkened. You take for granted life, salvation, sunshine, flowers, and countless other gifts from Me. you look for what is wrong and refuse to enjoy life until that is 'fixed'" (Jesus Calling).
This portion convicted me more -- especially the part about life, salvation, sunshine, and flowers because I am a lover of sunshine and flowers -- not to mention butterflies! I recently attended opening day of the Butterfly Jungle at the San Diego Safari Park. I went with my friend Kathy and her two girls. I also had a first: I got to take a #selfie with a butterfly! (Insert my really loud cackle laugh here). Then, I went another time and brought my mom to her first trip to see the butterflies. And another with my friend Araceli and her son Austin -- both of them hadn't been either. I love butterflies! I love how God spoke to me that day in something I could understand. It was so simple.
How do you hear God speaking to you?
I wanted to share a guest post from Devotional Diva on fasting written by my friend Elise Boggs. She shared three lessons from fasting that she learned, including lessons you might not think:
1. I can change.
2. It's not you, it's me.
3. The best exercise of my self will is letting go.
You can read the rest of her article on fasting here. These really convicted me because I have always been afraid to fast because of my blood sugar/anxiety issues. But it got me thinking, just because I struggle with wanting to do a food fast doesn't mean I can't do a negativity fast, right?
Negativity has a tendency to make you believe that you cannot change. That your circumstances will remain forever, and there is nothing you can do to improve!
Lies. Lies. Lies.
I don't know about you, but I'm tired of being so negative about one thing compared to the many positive things (like butterflies, sunshine, and flowers) the Lord has already done, is doing, and continues to do on my behalf (not to mention a vacation to Costa Rica, etc).
I want to feed on hope.
What about you you?
I hope you will join me on the journey of transforming the negative into positive. Note: A negative fast must be replaced with the positive feast in order for God to truly transform your thoughts. If you're having trouble with positive thoughts, start by reading Galatians 5:22-23.
Here is just one of the declaration lists of what to replace the negative with positive including Scriptures from Bible Gateway (#bgbg2). If you want all three you can buy their book here. Say these out loud with me:
1. My prayers are powerful and effective (2 Corinthians 5:21; James 5:16b).
2. God richly supplies all my needs (Philippians 4:19).
3. I am dead to sin and have a victorious DNA in me (Romans 6:11; Romans 5:17).
4. I walk in ever increasing health (Isaiah 53:3-5; Psalm 103:1-5).
5. I live under a supernatural protection (Psalm 91; Hebrews 8:6).
6. I prosper in all my relationships (Luke 2:52).
7. I consistently bring God encounters to other people (Mark 16:17, 18; Acts 3:6).
8. In Jesus, I am 100% loved and worthy to experience all of God's blessings (Colossians 1:12-15).
9. Each of my family members is wonderfully blessed and radically loves Jesus (Acts 16:30, 31).
10. I uproariously laugh when I hear a lie from the devil (Psalm 2:2-4).
If you find yourself waiting for your dead dreams to come back to life or if you're in a season of rest like me -- be encouraged!
My friend Alexa Russell Matthews who lives in Cape Town, whom I knew through social media, shared this with me to share with you on the topic of dreams and detours. She said on her blog,
I am not always very good at releasing things that I enjoy doing when they seem consistent. I know that I have made choices and lived a full life in the last 10 years – with gratitude for much that has been achieved, and often silent acknowledgment of the background stress in the process of getting to the grateful. I don’t think that God caused my tiredness and this detour. I do think that this detour may be a grace season from God though. This detour is a gift. It’s forcing the slowdown, settle down and check in about what does the day need to look like. I wish that I could say this happened more naturally for me than what it does. It’s encouraging rather than forcing me to reflect on what does the next decade need to hold.
You can read the rest of her blog here. I hope all of these verses, declarations, and words of encouragement are part of the many reminders that hope and positivity are alive and well through Christ. He is our Source.
Question: Are you currently believing any negative thoughts? Over the next few days, ask God to replace each negative thought with a positive declaration!
Bonus thought: The rich young ruler was given one directive by God to which he went away sorrowful. If God chooses to challenge you during this negativity fast -- let him! Do not go away sorrowful. Let God change your heart, go to the root, and remove once and for all what is hindering you from experiencing a positive feast of His goodness and love!