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Feeling Overwhelmed

July 29th, 2010

“Give your burdens to the Lord.” Psalm 55:22 NLT

“Schedules, more than circumstances, are often at the root of feeling overwhelmed.”

My thoughts today are about “feeling overwhelmed.”

It seems increasingly common to feel overwhelmed. Knowing you are not alone in this may not be an especially consoling thought. Maybe it’s the accelerating pace of life, like the momentum of a snowball gathering speed downhill. Or maybe it’s the hurry and worry of deadlines for things that must get done, and the desperation of needs that must be met. Whatever the origin, feeling overwhelmed happens more than any of us would want, creating stress, anxiety, and poorer health. You can do all you can to avoid it; you can complain about it; you can crumble beneath its weight, or you will have to learn how to deal with it. What is a person to do?

You might momentarily feel better because of the sympathy and support of a friend; it’s good to have a friend who understands and walks alongside you. Also, Godly counsel can help you to maintain perspective and remind you of God’s promises and power, but there are times when turning to God in trust is the only thing that can help.

David knew what it was to feel overwhelmed – the distrust of those he trusted, the betrayal of a son, the encircling enemies, the weight of the crown, and the shame of his guilt – who wouldn’t feel overwhelmed? I’ll tell you what he did not do; he did not give up, nor run and hide. He turned his whole heart to his God! “I will cry to You (Lord) for help, for my heart is overwhelmed. Lead me to the towering rock of safety, for You are my safe refuge, a fortress where my enemies cannot reach me. Let me live forever in Your sanctuary, safe beneath the shelter of Your wings.” Psalm 61:2 NLT.

When you are overwhelmed: take time! Schedules, more than circumstances, are frequently at the root of your feeling overwhelmed. Remove the hurry and you reduce the worry. Now here’s how you use that time. Take time to rest (time that you think you cannot afford to spare, you actually cannot afford to not set aside). Take time to share honestly with a Godly friend for counsel and prayer.

Take time to pray, inviting God’s help and direction. Don’t assume; ask! Praying makes a difference in you before it makes a difference in your situation. Take time to wait quietly before God. “I am content and at peace, as a child lies quietly in its mother’s arms, so my heart is quiet within me.” Psalm 131:2 TEV. Quiet your heart in God’s presence. Take time to listen. What’s the use of talking to God about the things you are feeling, if you fail to listen until you hear what God is saying?

Here’s God’s best advice: “Give your burdens to the Lord, and He will take care of you. He will not permit the Godly to slip and fall.” Psalm 55:22 NLT. Feeling overwhelmed can sometimes signal that you have allowed stuff to push God to the fringes of your everyday life. See 2 Corinthians 1:3-11 NLT.

My prayer for you today is that you keep God at the center of your heart and mind.

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