When you find yourself going through tough times it helps to put into practice a few spiritual disciplines to keep you from going over the edge. In my last post, I looked at three of the “faith tools” in my spiritual toolbox: (1) Meditating and claiming foundational truths for your life, (2) stepping back to look at things from an eternal perspective, and (3) learning to look for and appreciate the blessings in your life. I have three more to add:
Faith Tool #4: Godly Friends. We were never meant to do life alone. We need community and support – people to pray for us, to encourage us, and challenge us. Hebrews 10:25 says we need a godly community of faith. How can this be done when we are prevented from meeting together in a physical sense? Technology can be the next best thing. Reach out to godly friends for prayer and support with phone calls, texts, emails, zooming, whatever it takes.
Faith Tool #5: Learning what it means to submit and rely on God Himself. We can do our part, but 2 Corinthians 3:18 reminds us that ultimately it is the power of God that transforms our hearts and lives. Trusting in God often involves giving up our control of the situation and accepting that often there is a mystery to our suffering. Isaiah 55:8-9 reminds us that we cannot completely understand the ways of God. Maybe this means we need to take some time to be still and know that He is in control.
Finally, in our microwave culture, we often want or expect instant resolution. I confess I need to be reminded of this often: God’s work in our hearts and lives is more like a process than an event. And this leads me to my final tool in my spiritual toolbox.
Faith Tool #6: Keep serving. Love your neighbor. While we wait and walk through the process, according to Psalm 37:3 and Ephesians 2:10, it is still important to learn to do the good things He has called each of us to do today. This is especially important in difficult situations. It helps us move forward when we can focus on the needs of others instead of so much of ourselves.
So the next time life throws you a curveball (that could be later on today!), try putting into practice some of the ideas I have mentioned. It is not a magic formula, and all these things take practice, perseverance, and faith. But take the challenge, and I believe you will notice a difference.