Sometimes, the joy of being a follower of God seems far, far away.


  • The boss is giving you those, (I can’t believe you work for me!) looks!
  • The kids are whining, the dogs are barking, the phone is ringing and your head is clanging.
  • Your home looks like ground zero of a recent bomb blast.
  • Your schedule is full till the year 2025.
  • Your get-up and go, got up and went leaving you feeling tired and old.


Have you ever had one of those days, weeks… years? Sure.


I was having one of those days, shortly after making a major commitment to turning my life over to God. It wasn’t supposed to be like this. My new life was supposed to be one meaningful spiritual moment followed by another. But the grind of daily living took its toll and I was becoming discouraged.


A friend noticed my despair and asked me to join him for a cup of coffee. With his encouragement, I began to talk about frustrations and failures. “I thought becoming closer to God would change things, but I’m no better now than before,” I said.


My friend listened quietly and then said, “I understand your frustration, but you are not a failure. You simply have a vision problem. You are seeing all of the setbacks, frustrations and day to day mistakes you make in life with new eyes and becoming discouraged. Where you are failing to look is behind you.”


“What do you mean?” I asked.


“You made remarkable changes in your life which are obvious.  Looking behind enables you to appreciate the progress made so far, while continuing to work on improving your present relationship with God!”


This was advice I desperately needed to hear. What about you? Are you suffering from a chronic case of the bad day blues? Here are some action steps along with suggested Scripture:


  • Realize how much God loves you. John 3:16
  • Remember the cleansing power of forgiveness. Romans 10:9-11
  • A daily habit of prayer is a powerful weapon to beat the bad day blues. 1 Th. 5:16-22
  • Look for opportunities to put your faith in action. James 2:14-17
  • Maintain active contact with other Christians for support. Hebrews 10:24-25
  • Look behind you and celebrate the progress made so far. Philippians 4:4-9


These action steps may not stop your boss from complaining or your kids from whining. They may not help you clean the house or fix your schedule, but they will give you renewed strength and a feeling of peace about your relationship with God.


Remember to look behind you, keep improving and celebrate your victories.


As we begin a new year, I pray that you will feel God’s affirming presence and strength as you move more confidently toward the future knowing that God loves you, forgives you and is looking to be in a meaningful relationship with you. I pray that you receive opportunities to put your faith in action as you maintain and receive support from others.


Remember to look behind you, keep improving and celebrate your victories.


Oh, one more suggestion: Consider having a cup of coffee with someone who could benefit from hearing a word of encouragement from you. Now that’s a great way to begin 2013. Happy New Year!