Saturday, May 14, 2011

A Strategy for Coping With Life

Now when the sun was setting, all they that had any sick with divers diseases brought them unto him; and he laid his hands on every one of them, and healed them.  And devils also came out of many, crying out, and saying, Thou art Christ the Son of God. And he rebuking them suffered them not to speak: for they knew that he was Christ.  And when it was day, he departed and went into a desert place… -Luke 4:40-42 (KJV) 

I recall when I was in my early 20’s I worked for a warehouse in Dayton, Ohio and the work was at times physically demanding.  Such hard work can be exhausting.  Later when I was called into the ministry I no longer was engaged in this kind of manual labor, although working with people on a day-to-day basis can be exhausting in its own way.  We find in God’s Word how people were constantly seeking Jesus for healing, counsel, and to simply find answers.  The Lord also was confronted by those who were looking for ways to discredit Him.  I know from personal experience how working under such pressure from those around us can indeed wear us out emotionally, spiritually, and physically. 

Notice, however, that Jesus frequently sought refuge from the stresses He faced.  The Scripture shows us many times how Jesus deliberately slipped away from the crowds in order to be alone for spiritual nourishment.  Dealing with people can be exhausting; Jesus understood this perfectly.  Therefore, He often went way for times of prayer, meditation on God’s Word, and reflection on God’s will.  We do well to follow this example.  Consider how full and hectic our lives can be on any given day.  Our jobs, responsibilities, and the needs of family can drain us emotionally, physically, and spiritually.  By spending time alone with the Lord we can daily find spiritual strength to face these challenges head on. 

I sometimes encounter young people who complain of being bored.  This is always interesting to me, for I cannot recall ever being bored in my entire life.  Even when I was a child I could always find ways to keep myself busy and find something to amuse me.  As an adult I find my schedule is so overwhelming it’s a matter of determining daily priorities of what I can get done and accomplished.  Finding something to do is not a problem – at all.  Perhaps you can relate to this as you think about all you have facing you. 

Having a full schedule is a blessing.  It reminds us we are alive and connected in positive ways with the world around us.  However, becoming overwhelmed, discouraged, and burned out are always a possibility.  The greatest strategy we have for coping with life and walking in spiritual victory is a close personal relationship with Jesus Christ.  Life is tough; faith in Jesus Christ empowers us to cope and properly manage all which comes at us on a daily basis. 

Take time to pray and meditate on God’s Word each and every day.  Seek Jesus first (Matthew 6:33) and all else will line up in its proper place. 

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