When the present presses in so hard we can't imagine a future, the past hints at a larger order and shows us why and how we'll move forward. It can be like a map.~from Together by Judy Goldman
Our house is in chaos after a longterm bathroom leak went undetected, the floors rotted through under the tile. To repair the damage, the entire bathroom needed to be refurbished. We are in process, and it is messy and expensive to make things better, to transform the old and nonfunctional bathroom. A lot like the calamity in real life.
I suppose everyone has their own map and pathway when we encounter distress. We have free will, and this is a great and divine gift of freedom. There is no correct "formula" for living life. We all have our preferences and differences and limitations. Our weaknesses and beautiful qualities. When we face life's pain and realize that significant renovation must occur, it can be important for me to keep a few "101" concepts in place...
Increase receiving from God. Expect His favor, wisdom, discernment, provision, grace and protection inside life's leaks and murkiness, inside its crises. Receive, especially, the comfort of the Holy Spirit. He is the genius comforter, and we all deserve this consolation when life aches and throbs.
Decide to respond to others with dignity and respect, with mercy, with the fruit of the Holy Spirit, no matter their behavior. These reactions provide dignity and respect for ourselves, even when we must set limits or delicately detach.
Lean into the promises that God has already provided. Write them down. Keep them handy. Pray through them. Declare them. These truths keep one encircled by the light, and promote abiding and peace.
Pursue safe people, through family and friendships, therapy and/or support groups. It can feel relieving to know you are not "the only one."
Even when we've hit a concrete wall, God creates a window, makes a way when there seems to be no way.
From Psalm 68 (The Passion Translation)
O Lord, it was you who marched in front of your people, leading them through the wasteland. (vs. 7)
You, O God, sent the reviving rain upon your weary inheritance, showers of blessing to refresh it. (vs. 8)
What a glorious God! He gives us salvation over and over, then daily He carries our burdens. (vs. 19)
For your miracles have made us who we are, Lord. Do it again, and parade from your temple your mighty power. (vs.28-29)