Getting Meaning From a Meltdown

DSC01339Monday I had a little meltdown. It started as a whisper, “What am I doing?” Within seconds as I looked around my workspace, my suppressed feelings of inadequacy and overwhelm emerged as tears—and another whisper, “God, I don’t know how to do all this.”

After a good cry and a more thorough cry-out to God, his peace filled my heart. My circumstance had not changed. I still have a lot to learn and do. God changed my troubled heart. I emptied the burdens in my heart to God, and he covered those spaces with his presence, love, and peace.

Our meltdown themes vary from the trivial to the truly troubling. As my husband can attest, my closet has been the scene of more than a few trivial meltdowns, “I don’t have anything to wear to this!” – Never mind that I’m staring at clothes on hangars. The troubling meltdowns tend to involve a loved one or a circumstance.

DSC01341God uses our emotions to help us realize the condition of our heart. Either we have a pity-party focused inward, or we can focus upward and gain God’s perspective. Do you believe that God wants to help you in the trivial, too? Well, he does. Sometimes it’s through turning to him in the trivial that we learn he is truly near, listens, and desires personal relationship with us.

“Trust in the LORD with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make straight your paths.” (Proverbs 3.5–6)

God holds you and me. He holds our children. AND he never ever lets go. God is with us always and he’s for us. He has the way forward and faithfully provides his light at our feet. Practice being present to his presence.

IMG_0699Trust God.
Turn to him with your feelings of inadequacy, disappointment, discouragement, or overwhelm. Release these to him. Invite him to meet you where you are and fill you with all you need from him.

Dear God,
I choose to trust you Lord for . . .  Fill my heart with your love and peace. Today, I choose not to lean on my understanding—what I see and hear. Help me unload to you daily and to receive more of you. Help me acknowledge you as I move though the day—as I work, drive, prepare meals, or engage with my family and community. And I thank you in advance— in faith—that you WILL make my path straight. I love you. Amen.

Encouragement for Your Tuesday

DSC01633Hi Friends,

You have no idea how blessed, humbled, and honored I am that you read my blog. I love to hear from you, and encouragement warms my heart when you share my posts with your friends and family. Thank you!

I’m sure you agree that many good writers surround us these days. I wish that I read more than I do—my struggle is finding the time or giving myself the time. Can you relate?

Some days I read a blog post or section in a book, and I think, “Mmm, that’s good.” It enriches my mind, supplies a dose of encouragement, or I think of you and want to share it.  So, I’ve decided to share with you what I come across from time to time.

Here’s some encouragement for your Tuesday . . .

When Your Children Have To Act The Wiser by September McCarthy

When You Blink And Your Babies Are Big! by Kristen Kill

Making Brave Decisions: How to Master Decisions in Motherhood by Katie Westenberg

Beginning a New Season

DSC01364 Terrell and I  just had a long, fun weekend with our children. Since we’re spread out in various cities and states, we treasure the gift of simply being together. Nowadays, we have various devices that enable us to communicate frequently, yet the richness of sharing silly or special moments, listening and talking in person, or just knowing someone is ‘right there’ is immeasurable.

Before we said our good-byes, each of us shared something we’d like prayer for as we begin a new season. Terrell just began his second year of residency, Ellison and Carter are in graduate school, and Cecilia is moving to a new city to begin a Fellows program. We prayed for each other and hugged good-bye. An added blessing is that each of us knows our family is committed to continue to pray for each other.

DSC01373This didn’t happen overnight. When our children were old enough to write, we began to share prayer requests with each other. I bought them spiral notebooks and we shared requests most weeks. We encouraged them to pray those requests throughout the week.

Yes, they complained, groaned, and wore facial expressions to match.
Yes, they said, “No one else does this.”
Yes, I’m sure plenty of days went by and they didn’t pray for their brother or sister—just because.
Yes, I second-guessed my effort plenty of times and wondered if this was a ridiculous idea and a waste of everyone’s time.

Time passed. And as it did, Terrell and I prayed for their young hearts to want to pray, to remember to pray, and to experience God answering our prayers in whatever way he willed.

“Therefore, confess your sins to one another and pray for one another, that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous person has great power as it is working.” (James 5.16)

IMG_0033Simple prayers like being able to sink the basketball into the basket gave way to more vulnerable prayers for friends, guidance about decisions, help with a challenge, or even help to overcome an issue within our home. Terrell and I participated, too. Answered prayers were celebrated. Some prayer themes remained for months, while others were modified from week to week.

Our kids experienced that talking to God on behalf of their family matters and is effective. God showed them this, not us. Most importantly, they practiced building a personal relationship with Jesus. As we lead our children toward the Lord, he meets them where they are and loves them.

Begin a new season with your family—share and commit to pray for each other.

Dear God,
Please prepare the hearts of our family to become more prayerful for one another. Lead each of us into deeper intimacy with Jesus. Amen.