Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Feeling overwhemed?

This is the time of year when I can quickly get overwhelmed.  The school year is drawing to an end, and I have a lot more to teach.  My graduate class is drawing to an end, and I have a lot more to read and write.  Vacation is coming, and I have a lot more to plan.  So much piles up and every day is busy.  It is good to be reminded to stop and ask a couple of questions to help keep life in perspective. 

Life lesson:  Put it in perspective

1.    Will this matter in the grand scheme of eternity? 
Although the bills are paid late, the kids are grouchy, and the tires did not get rotated…Is any of this of eternal significance?  I have noticed the busier I get, the harder I must fight to rise early to study, pray, and focus on the most important things.  Remember to keep the first things first.  Read and pray, have coffee with a friend, play the board game with your kids…the dishes will wait.
Col 3:2 “Think about the things of heaven, not the things of earth.

2.  Will I feel like this next week?
Sometimes life can be all consuming.  I am completely overwhelmed and can’t see past the next deadline or the next task.  Stop, and ask yourself if the consuming thought or task will be a big issue in your life next week.  I love the admonition found in Colossians chapter 3.  We’re reminded that the things of this world can serve as distractions to lure our lives away from our real purpose to glorify God and be transformed. 
Col 3:10 says, “Put on your new nature, and be renewed as you learn to know your Creator and become like him.”

3.  Is it always going to be like this?
A huge defeating thought can be to feel bogged down by the present situation, believing it will always be this difficult.  I remember when the twins were babies and I was so busy all the time.  I had to remember there would not always be a dirty diaper to change and a baby to bathe.  One day, things would be easier.  One day they would not want me to hold them or read them a book.  I constantly focused on how quickly things would change.  It helped me to remember the days sometimes seem long, but the years are so short.  To keep focused, I prayed for grace and renewed strength constantly.  Keep focused, no matter the oppression of today, it won’t always be like this. 
Eph. 4:23 “Instead, let the Spirit renew your thoughts and attitudes.”

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