.: Under the Circumstances :.

This started off as kind of a trying year for me. I was sick about 25 out of the 31 days in January, which is one of the busiest times of year for me at work. Staying at home was not an option. This past year my grandfather's health and stability has been rapidly declining. It has been really difficult to see my parents under so much stress, as they have been trying to get him safe and settled. One day last week it took me about 3 hours to get home from work. It was a very frustrating experience. I had forgotten my cellphone (typical) and was unable to call Jason. So, I was stuck in my car by myself with no one to talk to. This gave me a lot of time to think. As I was sitting there at some point I remembered something my sister once said to me. Years ago I was talking to her on the phone and she said she had been sitting in traffic for a while because of an accident. I sympathized and she responded, "It's ok, it could be worse. I could be the one in the accident." I would love to say that when I remembered this my perspective and attitude immediately changed. It did not. It was a struggle. At times, I had to keep repeating out loud, the things that I was thankful for. Even doing this, it was still hard to not be stressed. It is not easy to keep a proper perspective when life gets difficult (Or when it is easy actually, but that is for another post). We have to work hard at it. It is important to do so. As Christians, our attitude reflects upon Christ. How we respond in stressful situations can either reflect well, or reflect poorly upon the body of Christ. So, how should we deal with stressful situations? 1- Prayer. The Lord is a great listener and wants us to come to Him with our struggles. Even when we don't know what to ask for it is good to just go to him in prayer about the situation. Over the past few months there were a lot of times when my family just wasn't sure what the best thing would be for my grandfather. We didn't stop praying until we figured it out though. 2- Scripture memorization. The summer after my freshman year of college I was a camp counselor. Before I started that summer I memorized II Corinthians 12:9-10. That verse got me through the summer. 3- Sing hymns or praise songs. Some of the lyrics of the old hymns (or the praise songs) will do a great job at taking your mind off of you and putting it back on the Lord. It also helps the time pass when sitting in traffic. This is something that really helps to calm me down.

During my time at Word of Life I often heard the story of how Jack Wyrtzen (Wolbi's founder) once asked a student how he was doing. The student started to reply, "Well, under the circumstances...". Wyrtzen interjected, "What are you doing under the circumstances?". If you can't do something about the circumstances, do something about your attitude towards the circumstances.

And He said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for My strength is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore most gladly I will rather boast in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me. 10 Therefore I take pleasure in infirmities, in reproaches, in needs, in persecutions, in distresses, for Christ’s sake. For when I am weak, then I am strong. .2 Corinthians 12:9-10.

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