Slow Down. Pull Back. Pause.
How to Survive Chaotic Times
Welcome to the 15th issue of The Aim and Soar Life, a weekly Christian personal growth and lifestyle newsletter that provides actionable, relatable, biblically rooted content to help you live abundantly and GROW YOU. GOD’S WAY.
Our theme for June is Self-Care. I pray this post is a blessing to you! I learned the hard way how important self-care really is—especially in times like these.
FORGETTING MY ANCHOR
Absolute chaos is how I would describe the last few months. Like you and many others, I like to stay informed about what’s happening in the world. I read global and financial news before I leave the house each day. It’s a ritual for me. It’s supposed to happen after my prayer and meditation time.
Regretfully, however, for the last few weeks, that hasn’t been the case for me. I hate to admit that I spent more time reading, discussing, and being discouraged by everything that is going wrong in the world than I did praying and reading Scripture (I know that’s completely ridiculous)😩. I forgot my anchor! The WORD. I need more of Him than I need anything else.
From mass shootings to kidnappings, to mean and hateful people on the internet, I have been overwhelmed with repeated trauma. It got to a point last week, that I just couldn’t take any more. I had to mentally shut down to preserve myself.
For me, that meant not talking on the phone or returning calls and texts, not reading certain news articles, and not diving into discussions about mass shootings, gun control, and other serious concerns that do need to be addressed. My body let me know that I’d had enough.
TRAUMA WREAKS HAVOC
The heavy weight of all the trauma took a toll on my mental and physical health by way of migraines, anxiety, stomach issues, insomnia, and sciatica. I’m normally a glass-half-full person. When I’m working with clients, I encourage them to focus on what’s going right in their lives instead of drowning themselves in what’s going wrong. Well, you know what? I literally had to coach myself and do therapy on myself, so that I could come out from under the depression and anxiety cloud that was engulfing me.
I know I’m not the only one because I had conversations with others who shared with me that they too were burned out from all the horrible events that have taken place in our country and around the world and had concerns about losing hope. If we are going to survive the times we are in, we’ve got to practice disciplines that will help insulate us from the chaos around us.
SLOW DOWN. PULL BACK. PAUSE.
We love to talk about self-care like it’s something new. I’m here to tell you that Jesus was the first self-care advocate. He provided the ultimate example of what it means to practice self-care. He knew how to come away from it all. He separated Himself from the chaos around Him to be alone and pray to the Father on numerous occasions. If Jesus, Son of God, Creator of ALL things, slowed down and pulled back, shouldn’t we?
Get Alone with God
We need alone time with the Father so He can comfort us and rejuvenate us. Too much of what’s going on in the world, and not enough of God and His Word, can only lead to depression and anxiety. Jesus’ solitude and silence is a model for us to follow. Make time to be with Him.
Lay Down the Heavy Weight of the World
Regardless of what’s happening around us, our eyes MUST remain on Him. It’s easy to lose focus and forget your true anchor if you allow yourself to be swallowed by what’s happening around you. Whenever I think of Matthew 11:28-30, not only do I think of salvation, but my day-to-day living. I need the Lord’s peace and rest from this crazy world. My soul needs rest from the trauma of the world. Forget about what’s happening all around you and Focus on Him.
Come to Me, all you who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For My yoke is easy and My burden is light. Matthew 11:28-30, NKJV
Let God Comfort You
We must first find comfort in God’s Word. You have to pray even when you don’t feel like praying. Even if you don’t understand God’s reasoning. If you have asked yourself, “Why isn’t He doing something?” you are not alone. I go from asking questions to crying out, “Lord, why won’t you help! Do something!”
He can handle your anger and frustration, I promise. We are all weary and tired. He will comfort us.
Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our tribulation, that we may be able to comfort those who are in any trouble with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God.
2 Corinthians 1:3-4, NKJV
Comfort Someone Else
God is always using us for His good purpose, even when we are at our weakest. He is a relational God, who is personal and intimate. He loves when we are in fellowship with one another. He expects us to comfort others.
Our experiences are not only lessons for us, but others. We are to lift others as we are lifted by Him. Someone needs what you have, whether it be an experience or a spiritual gift, you may be just what someone needs to make it through another day.
I invite you to encourage someone this week. Share a scripture, pray with them, and be there for them. You will find that you will be strengthened as you give of yourself.
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Until Next Time,
GROW YOU. GOD’S WAY.