Philippians 3:12 - Not that I have already obtained all this, or have already arrived at my goal, but I press on to take hold of that for which Christ Jesus took hold of me.
It had been an awful day. The things that happened weren’t supposed to happen. I found myself with thoughts of what was and what might have been and I traveled down the staircase of regret.
It just seems like after I think I’ve gotten over something, it comes back and slaps me across my face. And the pain and sorrow threaten to ruin me again.
But it isn’t just climbing back up that we must put our energies into. It’s also the attitudes we hold in our hearts.
Sometimes the hurts are so strong that they drive us into a dark cave where we press our face against the back wall. But we can’t stay in hiding forever.
When awful things happen in our lives, how to we move beyond what happened and into the hope of a new tomorrow?
Psycologytoday.com posted the article, “Let it Go,” which can help you make changes in your life such as changing your story and ruthlessly discarding the things in the past that are necessary in order to move forward. It isn’t easy, but it’s better than living the way you are now.
So I say as the Bible verse above talks about, I try to press forward and aim for the prize that awaits me just around the next corner in my future. God will help us gain the strength we need and that staircase won’t be as hard as we think it is to climb.
Matthew 6:34 - Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.
There are people lately who say that I worry too much. I’m always fretting about something. But what if I’m just concerned about a matter? What’s the difference?
Concern is more positive than worry. Concern focuses on something that might happen and is focused on wanting to solve the problem. Concern will cause you to investigate and look for a way to complete a task.
Worry can be more negative than concern. It is fretting about the future. Worry doesn’t benefit the one constantly thinking that nothing good can come out of the situation, while concern will take the steps necessary to find a solution.
Worry – What am I going to do?
Concern – Let’s see how we can solve the problem.
Worry - Focusing on the problem.
Concern - Focusing on the solution.
Worry – Paralyzes the person and they don’t move.
Concern – Let’s get moving. There’s always something we can do.
Barbraveling.com has an excellent article titled, “Worry vs. Concern:8 Characteristics of each.” It digs more deeply into the problem of moving yourself from worry to concern and shows some ways to conquer your worry.
Take a look also at the Bible verse above. It admonishes us to now worry about tomorrow. And it’s true tomorrow certainly will have much that can worry us, but let’s just focus on solving today’s concerns and turning our worries over to God.
Job 6:11-13 - What strength do I have, that I should still hope? What prospects, that I should be patient? Do I have the strength of stone? Is my flesh bronze? Do I have any power to help myself, now that success has been driven from me?
It’s time to wake up. Another day is calling your name, but you can’t bring yourself to rise out of bed. What if today is another bad day like yesterday? Lately it seems like only bad things happen to you –
All of these things and more can come crashing down on you. And when the tidal wave hits, there’s just isn’t anything left inside of you to have hope for.
Loss of hope is a common companion to many of us. We’ve had a rough time lately, but not just a onetime occasion –
It happened yesterday
It’s happening today
Will it happen again tomorrow?
All just out of reach.
So how do we find hope to hang onto?
Stunnedbygrief.com has the article, “What Hope is and How You Hang Onto It,” in which it discusses what hope is, hope’s power, and what you can do to nurture your hope such as don’t deny your emotions, but don’t let them consume you 24/7.
Sometimes it also pays to take a step back. Try to imagine yourself as an observer of your life. See the ways that you can stop sabotaging your hope, and begin again by trying some of the suggestions in the article above.
Take a look at the Bible verses above. These verses are about a man in the Bible named Job. He had lost his home, livelihood, children, and his health. Job voiced his hopelessness, but God didn’t kick him aside. In the end, Job’s hope was restored and so was all he had lost. God can do the same for us. Your life may look bleak now, but as hard as it may be, hang onto hope.
Job 8:21 - He will yet fill your mouth with laughter and your lips with shouts of joy.
As I have written before, relationships take a toll for people who battle emotional pain. And sometimes we are the ones who unknowingly sabotages our relationships.
For some, it is difficult to watch someone they care about who struggles with who they think they are, and how they cope living with depression every day.
It’s hard for others to watch us suffer. They want to help, but they don’t know how. You muster up the courage to talk about what you’re going through, but unless they have dealt with a mental illness they can’t understand.
So, they begin to back off on the relationship. And in doing so they hurt us.
Why can’t they just let you be you? Why do they doubt what you’re going through? Why won’t they try to keep our relationship together instead of letting it fall apart?
This leads us into a deeper depression than we already fight. Losing their friendship cuts deep into our heart and can lead to our closing ourselves off from the world.
How do we maintain relationships while struggling with emotional pain? Tinybuddha.com in their article, “How to Maintain a Healthy Relationship When You’re depressed?” Gives insight into how the relationship crumbles, and how to help you stay in relationships such as assessing boundaries and opening your heart back up to joy.
The Bible verse above talks about how God will once again give us reasons to laugh and find joy again in the relationships we have. A man in the Bible named Job had lost all he had – his home, land, children and health. Yet God restored him in the later days of his life by blessing him with more than he had in the beginning. As we learn how to cultivate relationships we will find more ways to stop sabotaging relationships, climb out of depression and find joy again.
Karen Dalske is a freelance writer, public speaker, is active in her church and writes her blogs out of her own experiences of pain, illness and loss.