Your mind is a private sanctuary, so don’t allow negative thoughts, opinions of others, or the darkness of this world to invade it. What you think about and dwell on can affect your entire mood and countenance. What goes on inside of you affects what happens on the outside, unless you learn to fake it.

Think about what makes you sad. When I am upset for a very long time, it is usually because I have let my mind dwell on sad things, and then I have let that single thought affect how I feel in that moment or that day. This also applies to being angry, irritable or depressed. These emotions occur because you allow your mind to remain in that negative place and often then wander down a path of destruction. You become like a reed that sways in the wind, never stable or strong.

But, do you know that you ARE strong? You have the power to control your moods, feelings and actions! Just because someone hurts or offends you, that hurt or offense doesn’t have to affect you for weeks on end. No, you can be sad or angry for a while, that’s part of being human, but then after you’ve processed the pain, it’s time to pick yourself up and choose to move on. The choice is truly yours.

You can decide to be happy, no matter what is going on in this crazy world around you. Your brain and thoughts affect how you feel and your brain can create patterns for the ways you think.  What types of thinking patterns or habits will you CHOOSE to create for yourself – negative ones or positive? Do you choose to dwell on the positive things of life, like friendships, provision and family or do you remain in sadness and choose to live negatively?

There is something attractive about a girl who stands tall and rejoices when the world comes against her.

James 1:2 says, “Dear brothers and sisters, when troubles come your way, consider it an opportunity for great joy.”

The Bible instructs us to see troubles we encounter as an opportunity for joy. When I read that, it sounds impossible.  Why would we consider trouble an opportunity for joy?  If you read that verse in context, it makes quite a bit of sense…it’s talks about being stronger on the inside than what is happening to you, because He who is in you, is greater.

“For you know that when your faith is tested, your endurance has a chance to grow. So let it grow, for when your endurance is fully developed, you will be perfect and complete, needing nothing.”

NEEDING NOTHING!  Wow, God will perfect our endurance and we will lack nothing, when we approach trails with joy. Wouldn’t you be happy and content if you lacked nothing? I sure would!

Dear girl, don’t let any troubles that come your way, take away your joy and perseverance. Press on and remember this trial is building your character and in Christ, you lack nothing!

carlyThis blog was written by Pure Design Teen Magazine’s blogger Carly Sage. Carly is 19 and lives in Youngstown, Ohio where she attends Victory School of Ministry. She hopes to be in full-time ministry as a pastor one day and loves to express herself through writing!