Ever overwhelmed? Me too.
The culprit is different for all of us. Maybe it is health concerns for you or someone you love or relationship issues that leave you unsure. For others, it’s the weight of caring for children or another responsibility that leave you feeling desperate and less than adequate. We’ve all been there. We’ve all been overwhelmed. Perhaps you are there right now.
As I said, “me too”. I know the feeling and at times could “write the book”. Over the last several years our family has met “Anxiety” in many ways. I’d like to share a few steps I take when anxiety over situations rears its ugly head…you know, on a good day, when I’m fixing my eyes on the Lord, which of course, is the goal.
1. Take a step back and look at the facts. Sometimes we just need to “sort” through the details. As in, is it really “a million things” or is it actually a few manageable items that need some tending? Is the “sky really falling” or is your inadequacy or control over the situation the real issue? This seems simple, but it’s good to identify.
2. Pray. The other night as I was feeling frustrated with my situation, all I really wanted to do was call my husband and cry. I felt like the Lord instructed me to just stop and pray, so that’s what I did. What followed, was the next step.
3. Read scripture. Don’t cross this one off the list or minimize how meaningful it is. There is a treasure of truth awaiting you if you’ll simply dig in. Here are a few scriptures that have encouraged me:
“I cry out to the Lord; I plead for the Lord’s mercy. I pour out my complaints before him and tell him all my troubles. For I am overwhelmed, and you alone know the way I should turn.” Psalm 142:1-4
I’ve told you all this before, but I love King David-the man who penned these words. This man fought lions and bears, dodged a blood-thirsty King, dealt with seriously consequential sin, and even had to run from his own son who was trying to kill him. Overwhelmed? Yes. He knew overwhelmed. Depressed? Yes. He knew that too! Relationship issues? Yes. Job loss? Disobedient children? Yes and yes.
I kept reading and found this golden nugget…
“The Lord helps the fallen and lifts up those bent beneath their loads.” Psalm 145:14
As I continued reading, I found this same verse again in the next chapter: “The Lord lifts the burdens of those bent beneath their loads. The Lord loves the righteous.” Psalm 146:8b
Oh that spoke to my heart right there in my kitchen. I realized right then that I was “bent beneath a load”. It felt too heavy to carry and I had simply fallen and felt “crushed” by it. I wanted to cry or call someone. I wanted to call for help, but the Lord was showing me that I just needed Him. He answered, as He often does, with His Word.
While my overwhelmed might be different from your overwhelmed, we all have times of it. Scripture shows us that there is freedom to say, “I’m overwhelmed! And I need some help, Lord!” It’s once you’re there seeking him, that he guides you to the words he planned out long ago. Words that would comfort not only my heart, but also yours and the many generations before us.
“The Lord lifts the burdens of those bent beneath their loads.” Will you trust Him to be faithful to do it?