We're in that time of the year when more people deal with depression than any other time. Christmas is past and January brings short days, long cold nights, and all those bills reminding us of the money we spent so generously in December. Most people don't enjoy the cold weather and January is typically the coldest month in the year. This year January has had a lot of gray, dreary days with fog and mud. 

With all those negatives stacked against us, we might as well hibernate and just wait for the warm weather and sunshine to come back... Right? I guess hibernation is one option, but I think that we can do better. 

And now you're expecting me to just tell you that you can pray more and let God fill your life with joy so that you don't have to live under a cloud of depression. All of that is true, but it sounds so spiritual and cliche that it usually has little affect on the people who hear it and the people who say it.

I think that God intends to use some very ordinary things and relationships in our lives to bring joy into our attitudes. Good relationships are the most universal measurement of personal happiness in the world. Anything that you do to build relationships will do more to chase away the blues than anything else. 

I also believe that God gave us beauty, hobbies, games and laughter to be enjoyed as gifts from Him.  The tendency of people to idolize pleasure has made Christians hesitant to enjoy it, but pleasure is meant to be enjoyed with a constant awareness of it's source. In other words, playing a game with friends or family can be an act of worship.

So chase away those winter blues with some fun. Spend some time with people you'd like to know better. Pick up a hobby that you only do in the winter. Enjoy some beautiful music. Whatever you do to enjoy the winter, don't forget to thank God for giving you the capacity to enjoy His creation.

Have fun!

Floyd Yutzy