Thursday, October 2, 2014
1-. Feeling overwhelmed is not a sign of weakness.
Sometimes life has seasons where things are just too much. This is how life is. Somewhere, somehow, the overwhelmed woman believes she is weak because life IS overwhelming at the moment. Jesus was overwhelmed in the Garden when He realized what God was expecting of Him. Even though He was fully God, even though He knew the reason He came was to conquer Death....He said, "Father, take this away from me. I cannot drink this cup!" Please find comfort in the fact that Jesus - ABOVE ALL OTHERS - understands what it feels like to see and know what God is requiring from you and being convinced that you are not able to drink that cup. It isn't a coincidence that He knew that PRAYER was the only thing that would give Him the POWER. Don't think He is disappointed in your weakness. He FULLY understands. RUN to Him in prayer. Pour out your heart. He cares. He does. He does.
“My soul is overwhelmed with sorrow to the point of death,” he said to them. Stay here and keep watch.Going a little farther, he fell to the ground and prayed that if possible the hour might pass from him." (Mark 14:34-35)
2-Feeling overwhelmed is the way Godly people often feel.
Sadly, in many Church circles, we feel the need to act like Christians never have anything but OVERCOMING thoughts. We all ACT so PERFECT that it is a wonder Jesus felt the need to leave Heaven and rescue us. However, the Bible paints a different and more truthful story about the people God loves and cares for. Feeling incompetent, and insecure and inept is a common thread throughout the Old and New Testament. I don't want to take up the time to tell the stories of overwhelmed people like Moses - who had the nerve to tell God Himself that He had made a big mistake, "I am sure you've got the wrong guy, Jehovah. Get someone else to deliver Your people." Ever feel like Moses? Do you ever think that God must have made a mistake when He decided to give you the husband and children you have? Do you feel inadequate to be what you need to be? Well, so did Moses. And look how God helped him accomplish what He had in mind for Moses. God showed Moses He IS the God who can split the Red Sea. And He is the God who showed Joshua that HUGE WALLS fall down through something as simple as PRAISE.
And how about Jonah, Ezekiel, Gideon, Hannah, David and Jeremiah? These GREAT people of the Bible all had, "I can't do this anymore" moments. Peter? Paul? The Bible doesn't hide their OVERWHELMED moments... As a matter of fact, MOST people in the Bible had SEVERE DOUBTS about their ability to figure life out. Most of them finally realized they couldn't... and just fell upon the mercy of a loving God to guide them. You can do the same thing.
"When I am overwhelmed, you alone know the way I should turn." (Psalm 142:3)
3. Feeling Like God Doesn't Care Is A Normal Reaction
Sometimes life hits a person with wave after wave after wave - all at the same time. We don't feel like quoting Bible verses and praying prayers. We just want the storm to stop. We want the fear to stop. We want the waves to stop. But it doesn't stop. It keeps getting worse. And it seems like God is asleep, and when you pray you get His voice mail.
The only thing more overwhelming than being overwhelmed is feeling like God doesn't care that you are. Well, join the group the Bible calls The Disciples. They were fishermen, used to storms, but were in The Big One and sure it was going to kill them. And they accused Jesus, saying, "Don’t you care if we drown?” (Mark 4:38) And Jesus stood up, said three words. And the storm stopped. And their question was, "Who is this Man that even the winds and waves obey Him?"
You know what Mrs. Older has discovered as I look back on my long life? Storms are sometimes sent so God can prove to you HOW POWERFUL HE IS. True, you may not want to hear that right now. You may not want to ask Him to help you to ENDURE until His answer comes. BUT... You cannot see the power of God unless and until you see Him get you through something you cannot conquer on your own.In the end, when you are old enough to have enough life to LOOK BACK ON.. you will understand that God's LOVE is the reason He allows storms. So that you can see that He can conquer them. Once you KNOW for YOURSELF that NOTHING IS IMPOSSIBLE for God... then His perfect love takes away fear.
If you feel like you have lost your grip on God.. if you feel like you are just too weak... HOORAY!
What GREAT GREAT JOY and FREEDOM awaits the person who finally comprehends that being His follower is not about our ability to hold on to Him, but His power to hold on to us. You can't hold on any longer? Relax. He's got you. Until you come to the end of your own strength.. you will never begin to comprehend the unexhaustable power of the Heavenly Father Who Loves You.
You may be getting splashed in the face with wave after wave. but He's still holding you. Financial problems.? He is holding you. Marital problems? He is holding you. Health problems? He's holding you. Feeling insecure? Holding you. Feeling guilty? Holding you. Feeling afraid? Holding you.
Always. Eternally. HOLDING YOU.
How do I know these things?
Mrs. Older has been where you are.
And I can tell you with GREAT assurance that every single person mentioned.. saw their storm end. And victory arrive.
And I have found - IN RETROSPECT OF COURSE - that God is being the MOST LOVING to me when He creates a situation in my life that I CANNOT FIGURE out on my own..
Being overwhelmed is no fun.
But it's just a season.
Hang in there.
THIS IS LONG ENOUGH.. already.
Thank you to all of you who send me emails.
We are, some of us, becoming friends, aren't we?
Keep sending me emails. (firstname.lastname@example.org) I LOVE GETTING THEM.
And feel free to leave your comments. (Even if you don't like what I wrote. I can take it.)