The past couple of days I have been faced with a personal dilemma that has been difficult to deal with. I have cried buckets of tears, prayed without ceasing, and considered my options. When I have been on the verge of making drastic changes, I've stopped dead in my tracks to do more crying, praying, and waiting on God for answers.
What do you do when your stress is constant and you don't know what to do? Seek advice from online articles and Christian self-help books? (I do.) Talk to friends? (Me, not so much. They all have their own problems.) Read Scripture and cry out to God? (That's a big yes for me!) Do something you enjoy? (Never hurts to do something for yourself on occasion, especially if it relieves the stress for awhile).
What if the answers don't come quickly? Do you despair? (At times, I do.) Give up? (On people, yes; on God, never, though sometimes I ask Him why things have to be the way they are or why He doesn't hurry up and fix the problem.)
The thing we most need to do is the very thing we forget to do -- focus on God. When we are facing financial difficulties, stress at work, illness, or the heartbreak of parenting wayward children, we quickly lose our focus on God and allow these other things to become strongholds that steal our peace and make our hearts bitter. I have to repeatedly remind myself to be thankful for the blessings God has bestowed on me and not focus on my problems. Sometimes I have to praise my way out of a pity party (that happens a lot!).
God's Word tells us plainly what we should do, even when we don't know what to do: "Rejoice always, pray continually, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus" (1 Thessalonians 5:16-18). Nowhere in Scripture are we told to fret, worry, or cry ourselves to sleep, but that is precisely what many of us do. Instead, we are commanded to carry one another's burdens (Galatians 6:2), cast our cares on God (Psalm 55:22, 1 Peter 5:7), and "trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight" (Proverbs 3:5-6).
Next time you are at a loss for a solution, stop looking for it and start looking for God. Seek Him first and the solution will eventually become clear.
Copyright © 2013 by Dee Dee Wike. All rights reserved. www.deedeewike.com
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