The sun shall be no more thy light by day; neither for brightness shall the moon give light unto thee: but the LORD shall be unto thee an everlasting light, and thy God thy glory. -Isaiah 60:19 (KJV)
Now that I am back from taking a week off I realize I have what appears to be an endless list of tasks, responsibilities, and problems which require my attention. This isn’t a complaint, but a statement of fact. I may have taken time off to rest, regroup, visit with family, and put my problems aside for a while, yet life forged ahead at its usual pace. I am grateful for the visit I had with my aging parents as well as the opportunity to relax and refocus. What an exciting day I am facing; it’s a good thing I spent an extended period in prayer this morning. Otherwise I would feel most overwhelmed.
I suppose when many people take vacations they try to forget about their jobs back home. While I attempt not to stress about what might or might not be getting done back home while I’m away I do try to learn during my time off. Allow me to share something I learned while on vacation which I found to be most interesting. I heard a radio program about a study which was done in England regarding the way people handle problems. The study found that the more people vent about their problems the worse they feel about them.
It’s human nature to talk about our problems, right? To some degree this can be healthy. However, people reported when they vented to family, friends, or co-workers about a new problem or frustration they were facing they felt worse about it. They felt more stressed, angry, and upset than before. Indeed, we can talk too much about our problems and in the end we feel worse about the situation. The researchers reported those who coped better with their problems practiced the following strategies:
- Humor. If we can find something to laugh about, even about a problem, we will come through it better. Humor is a wonderful tool for coping with stressful situations.
- Positive re-framing. Try to consider what good may have come out of the situation. What have you learned from it? How have you grown through it? Seek answers to these questions and you will find your outlook will improve.
- Acceptance. Accept that the problem, whatever it may be, has happened and then move on. Seek to be unshackled from the chains of asking why along the burden of guilt and self-pity.
Christ has not called us to walk in darkness. Instead He has called us to walk in His glorious and blessed light. As the Lord has promised, He will be to us an everlasting light. Claim this promise today and walk forward in confident and certain faith. The Lord is with us. Claim His peace today.