Have you ever felt mentally exhausted to the point you want to retreat into a corner and rock back and forth with your favorite blankie?
My husband and I went to Africa on a mission trip with our former church family a few summers ago and had a blast, only to return and have three siblings under the age of 7 move into our home to start our forever family. I had lost my voice due to an illness I contracted on the plane ride back and we started our parenting journey with one of us unable to speak actual words to little people whose hearts were breaking and scared due to all the changes going on in their little lives. It’s amazing what you can learn to communicate through a smile or a high five and a big hug when the words won’t pour out of your mouth.
What started out as a rocky journey into parenthood ended in heartbreak many months later with a failed adoption.
Our lives quickly become one pile of grief, stress and crazy after the Cheerios were vacuumed up from between the sofa cushions. We loved the crap out of those little people for a year and a half and then they were gone.
I seriously have no idea why God called us to adopt three kids only to have the process fail. But I have to trust that He had a greater purpose at stake than I can see. In fact, I do trust that. Wholeheartedly.
But some days it’s still hard for me to catch my breath, literally and figuratively. Grief and loss does crazy things like that to people. The tears still fall easily, but thankfully as time goes on, the sadness is slowly replaced with smiles and warm thoughts of precious moments spent together as a family.
How do people get through this life without Jesus?
What do you do when you are overwhelmed, stressed out and emotionally exhausted to the point you feel like you have nothing left to give the big and little people in your life?
I feel like the answer we’re supposed to give as Christians is: “I pray, I read my Bible and I ask the Lord to help direct my path.”
But seriously, let’s be real here.
More often than not, our time in God’s Word is often one of the first things to go in a season of overwhelming chaos or grief.
We often turn to things of this world to bring us comfort – like Netflix binges, chocolate bars, shopping sprees, books, video games.
We get lost in serving at church. Or schedule endless coffee dates with friends. Anything to keep our minds busy and provide a bit of escape or relief from the pain we are feeling.
I don’t even want to admit how much junk food I have consumed over the past months. Probably enough to feed a third world nation. And the binge-watching of Netflix? I’m embarrassed to say it’s been at an all-time high lately.Turn to Jesus before you grab the remote or that piece of chocolate and amazing things can happen. Click To Tweet
We need to turn to Jesus when we’re stuck in the cycle of numbing ourselves with the comforts of this world.
Yes, I know, it’s easier to just go out and buy more chocolate. Or give yourself a pass to keep binge watching the Netflix shows. Or encourage yourself to buy new pants when the waistline of your jeans begins to cut off your circulation. Ahem….don’t judge, I just did that. OK, I took them back to the store and got out the exercise video, (OK, who am I kidding? I kept the dang pants, I just want you to think I got the exercise video out instead. lol)
Don’t get me wrong. I love Netflix. I am a huge fan of Cheetos. I dig chocolate. But these things are not the cure our hearts need when we are hurting. We need Jesus!
So the next time you are ready to grab the remote to start the Netflix binge or about ready to unwrap that candy bar when you hit the next bump in your marriage or parenting journey, take heart and turn to Jesus first.
Find ways to praise Him in the middle of your storm.
Meditate on these scripture verses and then go ahead and grab that chocolate bar and enjoy!
10 Bible Verses To Cling To When Life Gets Hard
- And we know that God causes everything to work together for the good of those who love God and are called according to his purpose for them. Romans 8:28
- Trust in the LORD with all your heart; do not depend on your own understanding. Seek his will in all you do, and he will show you which path to take. Proverbs 3: 5-6
- The name of the LORD is a strong fortress; the godly run to him and are safe. Proverbs 18:10
- Come, let us worship and bow down. Let us kneel before the LORD our maker, for he is our God. We are the people he watches over, the flock under his care. Psalm 95:6-7
- The LORD is my strength and my song; he has given me victory. This is my God, and I will praise him— my father’s God, and I will exalt him! Exodus 15:2
- Dear brothers and sisters, when troubles of any kind come your way, consider it an opportunity for great joy. For you know that when your faith is tested, your endurance has a chance to grow. James 1: 2-3
- Enjoy prosperity while you can, but when hard times strike, realize that both come from God. Remember that nothing is certain in this life. Ecclesiastes 7:14
- Don’t be afraid, for I am with you. Don’t be discouraged, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you. I will hold you up with my victorious right hand. Isaiah 41:10
- Have mercy on me, O God, have mercy! I look to you for protection. I will hide beneath the shadow of your wings until the danger passes by. Psalm 97:1
- Then Jesus said, Come to me, all of you who are weary and carry heavy burdens, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you. Let me teach you, because I am humble and gentle at heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy to bear, and the burden I give you is light. Matthew 11: 28-30
The Salt & Light featured blogger is…
I think all of us have been at a place where life doesn’t work out the way we want it to, right? I read a post by Jen recently about clinging to Jesus in her hard times and it was encouraging. She laments about how challenging it is to praise Him in our storms, but encourages us to do just that when life gets hard. She writes about a health struggle and says, “Even through my tears of pain, I whisper ‘I know You are good.’ Even in my disappointment and despair, I still find my hand lifted to Him in praise.”
I am a co-host of the weekly Salt & Light Linkup for Christian bloggers. Come join us for some prayer, encouragement and a weekly linkup in our Facebook group. One blogger is highlighted in social media and on our blogs each week!