Monday, February 19, 2018

How to deal with Heavy Feelings

Last Thursday I woke up with an offense in my mind and heart. Usually, I would work it out during a run but I didn't have time: I had to be at work extra early. The pain that offense caused me was great heaviness. I could keep those feelings inside but I chose not to. Still, that thing hurt. I decided to do something I tried before: turn to God. Those minutes I spent getting ready for work and actually arriving there were filled with the words of the Bible. I simply turned an audio Bible on and listed to a few chapters of Proverbs. There was immediate peace. I was no longer focusing on the offense but on what God was telling me through His Word.
When I got in my car, I decided to listen to the book we are studying in Sunday School (Judges). Those words of old are still relevant and quite amusing!
I wish this method was a magic pill. The memory of my offense returned that day and that's when I prayed and asked God to help me once again. Help He sent in the form of peace and because my mind was peaceful, I was able to remember how God feels about me holding on to offenses. Forgiving and letting go became much easier that day.
I'm telling you this story because we all deal with heavy feelings. My recent experience came because of an offense. In the past, it was due to worry. When heaviness fills my heart, I have learned to turn to the word of God for guidance, relief and lasting freedom.
I even created the habit of writing down between 5-10 Bible verses related to the problem at hand. I chose a few verses for you, they are all in the English Standard Version:

You keep him in perfect peace whose mind is stayed on you, because he trusts in you. Isaiah 26:3

Why are you cast down, O my soul, and why are you in turmoil within me? Hope in God; for I shall again praise him, my salvation and my God. Psalm 42:11 

Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. Phillipians 4:6-7 

Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things. What you have learned and received and heard and seen in me—practice these things, and the God of peace will be with you. Phillipians 4:8-9 

The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases; his mercies never come to an end; they are new every morning; great is your faithfulness. “The Lord is my portion,” says my soul, “therefore I will hope in him.” The Lord is good to those who wait for him, to the soul who seeks him. 26 It is good that one should wait quietly for the salvation of the Lord. Lamentations 3: 22-26

I have the habit of posting Bible verses in a visible place (kitchen sink area or bathroom mirror) so that when my mind begins to wonder, my eyes meet the truth and I'm forced to think about it. I've done this often and it has helped my family and I a lot. We had many Bible verses posted around the house when we were waiting on God to send us to the new jobs He had for us. God is faithful, always.

I'm not sure what type of pain you are carrying inside. What I know for sure is that you have a God who loves you, who cares for you and who will rescue you. I encourage you to grab a hold of His Word as we read them in the Bible.