Are You Throwing a Pity Party?

If your theme song has become “It’s my party, and I’ll cry if I want to,” you need to get a new song.

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Little girl holding up a frown sign. Thinkstock.

My mama, Marion Medlock, was a hoot. You might say, she called ‘em like she saw ‘em–especially when it came to her children. She was an encourager and a cheerleader, but when we needed tough love, she wasn’t afraid to dish out a big helping. And I needed a helping from time to time.

Whenever I would get down about something or start saying negative things, she’d listen and encourage for a bit. Then she’d say, “Listen, Poor Pitiful Pearl, nobody wants to come to your pity party.”

As much as I hated to admit it, she was right. The only ones showing up at a pity party are bitterness, envy, depression and hopelessness. Not a real popular bunch.

If your theme song has become “It’s my party, and I’ll cry if I want to,” you need to get a new song–a song of joy in your heart. That new song will burst forth once you get your thought-life under control.

What we think and talk about usually become what we believe and, in turn, create authority in our lives. If you’re constantly thinking “oh woe is me,” then you’ve gotten into the habit of what Pastor Keith Moore calls, “stinkin’ thinkin.”

But here’s the good news–you can break that habit today!

Philippians 4:8 says, Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirableif anything is excellent or praiseworthythink about such things. (NIV)

Michelle and her mom.Change what you think, change what you say, and you’ll change your life.

Don't say, “I hate my job. My boss obviously doesn’t like me. I’ll never get ahead in this company.”

Say, “I am thankful for my job, and I’m thankful that I have great favor with my boss and fellow employees.”

Say, “And, praise God, according to Jeremiah 29:11, I know that God has a good plan for me, which includes promotion and fulfillment. I am blessed going in and blessed going out. I am the head and not the tail. I am above and not beneath!”

When you begin saying those things, you won’t be able to engage in stinkin’ thinkin’. The two cannot co-exist. So, quit sending out those pity party invitations and start praising God for the good things He has done and continues to do in your life.

I know firsthand that self-pity can bring destruction into your life. Self-pity diminishes our view of what God says about us and distorts our view of God and His character. It creates beliefs that God has let us down or will let us down in the future. Bottom line, self-pity establishes a distrust in God.

I realize that if you’ve been Poor Pitiful Pearl for many years, you may not even know that you’re engaging in self-pity. Here are some ways to recognize it and keep it from operating in your life. You might be a “Poor Pitiful Pearl” if you:

  • Repeatedly tell or think about how someone wounded you.
  • Ask, “Why did this happen to me?”
  • Have feelings that you’ve been treated unfairly.
  • Make statements such as, “I didn’t deserve…”
  • Make general statements such as, “I will never succeed...I always fail.”
  • Have first-person-focused thoughts–I, me, my–all the time.

It’s not too late to leave behind Poor Pitiful Pearl and become Polly or Paul Positive.

Pray this with me:

Father, help me to escape this Poor Pitiful Pearl mentality and begin seeing the good things in my life. I praise You for all that You have done, and all that You are going to do!

Help me, Lord, to focus on good things and speak only what You say about me and my life. And, help me to get my eyes off myself and onto You. In the Mighty Name of Your Son, Jesus, Amen.

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