The past two weeks brought significant change for me. I have been placed on short term disability to rest, heal, recover and hopefully find some definitive answers and treatments. It’s a hard place for me to be in emotionally and physically. Every day is comprised of the same exact recurring battles, and referencing a previous blog post, I am entirely and utterly sick and tired of being sick and tired.
If I’m being honest, I consistently feel as though I’m smack dab in the middle of a hopeless situation with no light at the end of the tunnel and no reason to fight another day. It’s in these difficult moments that I literally have to force myself to stop for a second to evaluate how I am handling my circumstances- because something clearly isn’t working! It was during a recent evaluation period where I realized that I am looking at my situation all wrong.
So, let me give you a minute to evaluate your view on your circumstance. The difficult matter in your life may be a health issue, a financial burden, a loss of a loved one or a number of other concerns. Are you overwhelmed and overcome with a feeling of hopelessness? If that’s the case for you, then you’re probably, like me, looking at the past days, months or years that you’ve been on this journey with despair and negativity, and when looking into the future, you probably see a big black hole of uncertainty.
So now you’re probably saying “Great! I am still overwhelmed, feel hopeless, and my problem hasn’t gone away. What now?”
Well, I’m glad you asked! When I came to that same realization, I didn’t feel any sense of comfort or change instantly either. Let me ask you this. When you begin to crave your favorite dessert, does it instantly appear in front of you? Or, do you have to gather the proper ingredients and then proceed to put them together in a specific manner to form that oh so delicious dessert? (Is it just me or do I smell yellow cake with chocolate icing right now?!) Anyhow, I digress… The answer is that you have to start with the proper ingredients. It’s the same in life. If you are craving situational change, you need to be prepared to invest in the ingredients for change and follow the recipe to get the end result.
When following a recipe, it is necessary to see the end goal- what are you making? But you won’t get anywhere if that’s all you focus on; it’s even more vital to break it down ingredient by ingredient- step by step.
So, take a look at the desired end of your situation- what do you see? Peace? Joy? Healing? Freedom? Now, examine your answer and decide how you’re going to get there. To some extent, you have to be willing to throw the big picture out the window, because if that’s all you focus on you’re never going to actually arrive at your end result.
I have in no way, shape or form mastered this recipe- just ask my husband! But, I am going to include it below- who knows! Maybe you’re the master chef!
Recipe For Success
Servings- Just what you need!
Total time- Depends on each situation but never longer than you can wait!
Difficulty- Relatively hard but well worth it!
Note- Results may vary based on the end goal! Please take careful care and attention when adding each ingredient. No substitutions have been proven to work, as each ingredient work together in perfect harmony!
- A dash of Daily prayer
- A dash of Daily devotion
- Flexibility as needed
- A smidgen of Laughter (more if required)
- A few pinches of Trust
- Preheat. In other words- Plan ahead! Proverbs 21:5 “The plans of the diligent lead surely to abundance, but everyone who is hasty comes only to poverty.” Make a budget, plan your meals, organize your bills- plan in every area of life to the best of your ability!
- Begin each day with prayer. Commit to the mindset that you’re going to take today moment by moment without fear of tomorrow. Philippians 4:6 “Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need, and thank him for all he has done.”
- Spend time in devotion reading His word. It’s your ultimate recipe book for life! Psalm 119:105 “Your word is a lamp to guide my feet and a light for my path.”
- If needed, add the flexibility! You can plan, budget, and file all you want, but without a bit of flexibility, you will still be anxious that your plan will not work out! Philippians 4:12 “I know how to live on almost nothing or with everything. I have learned the secret of living in every situation, whether it is with a full stomach or empty, with plenty or little.”
- You will need to keep a constant flow of laughter and joy throughout your day. Tim Hawkins is my favorite comedian. (Watch some of his material here). Take a few minutes to watch a funny video, read a funny story or laugh with a friend! Psalm 126: 2 “We were filled with laughter, and we sang for joy. And the other nations said, ‘What amazing things the LORD has done for them.’” Proverbs 17:22 says, “A cheerful heart is good medicine, but a broken spirit saps a person’s strength.”
- Last but not least, it’s time to add the trust. Psalm 31:14 “But I trust in you, LORD; I say, ‘You are my God.’” Life is scary, full of the unknown, and overwhelming; but when you incorporate this final ingredient of trust in God, you will begin to see the recipe turn into what you originally saw it as!
- Finally, pour the completed mixture willingly at Jesus’ feet and bake at a degree of patience you have never before experienced. When the timer rings (in other words, when you hear the still small voice of the Holy Spirit) you can open your mind and heart to the final product that He has prepared for you. It’s in that very moment that you will realize that if you would have tried to finish it on your own you would have been wildly disappointed! Colossians 1:11 “We also pray that you will be strengthened with all his glorious power so you will have all the endurance and patience you need. May you be filled with joy”