In The Bleak Midwinter

by Sandy Kirby Quandt

“In The Bleak Midwinter” is one of my favorite songs; not just at Christmas, but all year long.

I’ve lived in areas of the country that qualified as a bleak midwinter. Barren trees. Dead grass. Gray skies. Water as hard as stone. Frosty cold air along with frosty cold attitudes.

I’ve lived where Seasonal Affective Disorder reigns. In fact, I met Dr. Norman Rosenthal, the world-renowned researcher and psychiatrist who first diagnosed Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD) and light therapy to treat it in 1981.

We may not live in climates subjected to a lack of sunshine, but many of us live in climates subjected to a lack of SONshine.

We live in a land of dark shadows, and walk in darkness.

A land where the light of Jesus is suppressed.

A land where darkness threatens to block out everything that is pure, true, lovely, just, noble, honest, and praiseworthy.

We live in a land where decency, purity, truth, and honesty are dismissed as habits of fools; and unethical behaviors, bullying tactics, lies, and dishonesty reign as tools of the wise.

In Dr. Rosenthal’s study on SAD he discovered several things which could combat it’s effect. I’m going to borrow from Dr. Rosenthal’s research, look at the Bible, and see how we can combat a different kind of SAD – Son Avoidance Disorder.

Light therapy:

When our days seem dark, we should turn our focus on Jesus, the Light of the World, in whom there is no darkness.

Stress management:

The Bible tells us to cast all our cares on Jesus because he cares for us. Meditate on the truth found in God’s Holy Word.

Exercise:

We gain great benefit from the spiritual exercise of prayer, meeting together with like minded Believers, and studying the Scriptures.

Talk Therapy:

As iron sharpens iron, we need trusted prayer warriors and strong Christians to walk with us through our bleak days of winter.

Take trips to sunny places:

Traveling or moving to a sunny place may not be an option for us, but we can keep on the sunny side of life by turning our thoughts to whatever is true, lovely, praiseworthy …

Watch our diet:

If the daily intake into our mind is full of rage, insults, belittling, and rude behavior either from hateful social media rants; loud mouthed radio and television talking-heads; movies, television, or books that promote values contradictory to those found in the Bible, then we need to remove them off our plates and get them out of our system.

Whether we struggle through the gray days of a bleak midwinter, or the gray days of living in a land of dark shadows, our hope rests in Jesus.

How do you manage a bleak midwinter?

Leave a comment below to share your thoughts on the subject. If you think others would appreciate reading this, please share it through the social media buttons.

The people who walk in darkness will see a great light. The light will shine on those living in the land of dark shadows. Isaiah 9:2 (NLV)

I wish you well,

Sandy

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One of my posts will appear on Inspire a Fire Tuesday, January 3, 2017. Please stop by.

Walk in the Light of Jesus

bingby Sandy Kirby Quandt

Pilot and I have several different flashlights which can be worn on our foreheads. These things are great when you need your hands to be free. No need to worry with holding a hand-held flashlight.

The only drawback I’ve found with these flashlights is when Pilot swivels his head toward me and I get blinded by the light. Yes. It happens.

pixabayWhen wandering around outside at night having a light to show the way is essential. If we can’t see where we’re going we might end up somewhere unsafe.

Without light, we could trip and fall over rocks and roots that litter our path.

Fierce beasts could be waiting to pounce in the dark. Probably not, but you never know.

In life it’s a good idea to have the light of Jesus, the light of the world, lighting our path.

When we follow his light we won’t end up somewhere unsafe.

His light guides us on the path we should go and points out the things that threaten to trip us up, and make us stumble and fall.

When we are covered by the light of Jesus fierce beasts are exposed for what they truly pixabayare, and can be avoided.

I don’t know about you, but I’d rather have the light of Jesus shining on my path than stumble around in the darkness on my own and be attacked by fierce animals.

Do you have a favorite type of flashlight you like to use? Hand-held or one worn on your forehead?

Leave a comment below to share your thoughts on the subject. If you think others would appreciate reading this, please share it through the social media buttons.

O Israel, come, let us walk in the light of the Lord and be obedient to his laws! Isaiah 2:5 (NLT)

I wish you well.

Sandy

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Sunshine in My Soul

bingby Sandy Kirby Quandt

Dreary weather. No sunshine. Bitter wind. Cold temperatures. Rain. Yuk. Sigh.

That pretty much sums up the beginning of 2015 in my part of the world. I understand we aren’t the only ones to experience nasty weather, and I sympathize with those who battle the elements to a greater intensity, but for us, where it is usually at least partly sunny most days, the absence of sunshine has been downright depressing.

A small ray of the bright stuff every now and then is appreciated.

Fortunately, the rain stopped and the sun is once again casting shadows across the yard.

While we waited for the dreariness of the past month to end, it would have been bingeasy to think the sun was never going to come out. It would have been easy for our attitudes to become as gloomy as the weather.

In life, I believe, there are times our  outlook on life can become dreary without a ray of hope in it. Those times are enough to turn even the most cheerful person into a person of gloom, despair, and agony.

When those clouds of darkness come over us, it’s easy to wonder if we’ll ever experience the glow of light again. It becomes difficult to look past the darkness that envelopes to even consider things could get better. Hope of brighter days can vanish like the morning fog.

During these times of misery and seeming defeat we need to keep our eyes off our situation, and keep them on Jesus, the Light of the World in whom there is no darkness. He is the one who can turn our darkness into light. It is his hand that can guide us by faith through the dreariness of life.

bingLike Annie sang in the musical of the same name, the sun will come out tomorrow. We won’t be left in perpetual darkness, gloom, and despair if we hold onto the Light of the World, because no matter what it looks like outside there is sunshine in our souls.

Amen?

Feeling like the sun will never shine again? Call out to Jesus. Look to him to replace your dreariness with his light.

What do you do when the dreariness of life seems to overwhelm?

I’d love to hear your thoughts on the subject. Leave a comment below. If you think others would appreciate reading this please share it through the social media buttons.

And the city did not need the sun or the moon. The glory of God was shining on it, and the Lamb was its light. Revelation 21:23 (CEV)

I wish you well.

Sandy

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