She looked at me helplessly.
I wanted to help. I sincerely did. But she was presenting with a really tough issue.
This, as any therapist or coach knows, is a dilemma. This client was specifically determined to find peace in the whirl of life. Hmmmm.
She was grateful for the extra set of trained eye as we navigated her story. As I love seeing the BIG PIC for others, I was totally game.
In her world, her phone buzzed incessantly. The calls and texts were coming in faster than she could attend to them. This latest person wanted a ride to the airport stat. The next text she shared with me was from an elderly family member saying “MAJOR FAVOR” to ask. She was afraid to hear what it was for fear she wouldn’t be able to say no.
And a bitterness grew within her rapidly.
Ministry had burned her out and she was angry. Did being a Christian mean you just forgot about yourself and let others walk all over you?
As I’ve shared in the past, I have been all but forced to learn that God teaches you through the difficult experiences themselves if you will listen. You will know what to do if you are open to listening and learning in those moments.
Whether it’s an emotional and time crunch issue like hers blocking you from peace or a health issue, such as frequent trips to the bathroom leaving you exhausted, or a mental issue making you feel anxious doing certain tasks, He knows you have certain triggers and limits.
God isn’t limited however.
And with God, all things are possible in your life. Every dream in your heart that is truly good is placed there by Him. These dreams will be carried out by you or in your legacy in some way, if you do not grow weary and give up.
And knowing this, that hot Florida summer a few years back, she found the secret life of peace. Here’s what she learned and I reviewed in this time. I hope you too will use these tips for finding peace in your world!
1. Remember it is up to God, not you to save everyone in the world. He uses you at times to accomplish His purposes. Sometimes he pushes you past what you consider your limit. Those are big and important times, such as planned or unplanned missions trips or experiences you are called to, times like having/adopting/fostering babies, dealing with grief, public speaking opportunities, etc. Don’t walk away from the challenges that are uniquely yours to face just because they’re hard. Instead, prepare for them as best as you can, take care of yourself with rest in these seasons and pray and stand on Phil 4:13 through those times. “I can do all things through Christ who gives me strength.”
2. Revisit your calendar each day and week to make sure you didn’t set yourself up for failure and a lack of peace. Each day should contain some time just for you to regroup. Even the busy ones. Always include something you can look forward to as your own little nook in the day. Whether it be reading your Bible or a favorite book, taking a walk with headphones, making a favorite dish, or taking a drive, find something you can do each day to refresh. The Bible says, “He makes me lie down in green pastures…and restores my soul.” (Ps 23) You need this time.
3. Create a good plan for sleep. For those who can sleep peacefully anywhere this is not an issue but for those who have to work for good sleep, it’s a necessity. Clean your room, buy a fan, turn off tech or take a midday nap at the very least to grab the rest you need when you feel a lack of peace, aka anxiety.
4. Read or re-read the book, Boundaries, by Cloud and Townsend. Some need this review regularly. And don’t hide behind this book if there is something God wants to face, like Jonah in the Bible did. As he found out, you can’t run from God but you can pace yourself, honor your “gut” (often the Holy Spirit’s nudging) instinct when something doesn’t feel right, and remember God made you for rest as well as work!
5. If you notice a regular pattern of your heart racing, your nerves “shot” or your anxiety skyrocketing, take a step back from your busy life. Something’s gotta give or you will. Get a physical also to rule out health issues and take a step toward coaching or counseling with us if you need specific help right here. We have both in-person, phone, Skype, or video-based help! Call or text us at 941-301-8420 to chat or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org!