It’s easy to write a blog about overcoming frustration when my life is peaceful. It is a bit of a challenge to write about when my life is chaotic. Today, as I sit overwhelmed in my situation, I have challenged myself to write this blog.
Normally, I try to keep my life as simple as possible. That is a challenge under normal circumstances simply because we live 72 miles from the nearest large city, we have small children, aging parents and all the other regular stuff. But, for the past seven months my husband and I have been working in a community 50 miles away. Planning to close on a house in the new community on September 4, we started our kids in school there. However, the house situation has drug on longer than expected.
Four, tired people in a Toyota Camry commuting 100 plus miles a day can get old quickly. The drive and crazy schedules make for two, tired, bickering kids as well as spouses. Some nights work commitments have us arriving home around 10 p.m. and then back up and in the car by 6:30 a.m.
I give you this background so you know I’m not writing from my peaceful, pillow-fluffed living room with my five-course-nutritionally-balanced dinner waiting patiently for the family to arrive home. I come to you in the midst of my ciaos.
When my life gets out of balance, and there is no time to do the regular “Christian” things like quite time, ministry, church, etc., here are some things that bring me peace.
1. Find a good Christian program on the radio.
XM radio makes up for the lack of radio stations in my area. I tune into channel 131 for Christian programs and sermons in the morning. This helps me get some Jesus into my tattered soul.
2. Listen to Christian music.
When I travel alone, I get a lot more out of this. But, when the family is with me, they don’t appreciate my loud praise music!! However, even listening to it quietly is refreshing to my soul. At work I play my favorite Christian music through itunes.
3. Carve out a little time during the day to read my bible.
If time allows, I will spend time during my break or lunch reading the bible. The bible is my true north. It balances my life when I feel extremely out of balance.
4. Pray with my family on the way to school.
Believe it or not, when the kids start bickering, I will bust out with a prayer. This seems to bring peace to everyone. It settles the kids down faster than anything else I can do. It doesn’t always last as long as I would like it to, but it helps tremendously. The tough part is remembering to do it.
5. Call a friend who can speak a word into my life that brings clarity and direction.
I have a handful of powerful Christian friends I can call on to pray with me. Their words always bring peace to my soul and settle me down. Sometimes they even get a word from the Lord for me. It is usually a word of comfort and encouragement.
6. Find something I can praise God for.
Even if my life is upside down, I try to find reasons to praise God. This gets my focus off of my situation and on Him. There is always something to be thankful for: food in my mouth, a shirt on my back, a roof over my head. Praise the Lord for HE is good!
10 Hear, Lord, and be merciful to me; Lord, be my help. 11 You turned my wailing into dancing; you removed my sackcloth and clothed me with joy, 12 that my heart may sing your praises and not be silent. Lord my God, I will praise you forever.
What other things bring you comfort in the midst of ciaos? I welcome your comments below.
In the meantime, I pray God would lift you out of the muck and the mire and set you on a mountain of his peace and joy.
An awesome song by Heather Clark. This entire album is powerful.