I’ve been struggling to be still the past few days—maybe weeks. Not still as in a physical position, but still in a spiritual condition. One of the characteristics of addiction is restlessness. When things get uncomfortable or uncertain, the addict’s natural response is to change scenery physically. I’ve realized lately that can also be true of us as believers.
Following God is hard. It’s not an easy path. Not because of God, but because of us. My mind races when faced with uncertainty or turmoil.
I spend a good part of my day solving problems. When I encounter a) too many problems at once, or b) an unexpected problem out of left field—-I can find myself fretting about things beyond my control. In that moment, it is critical that I simplify things. I have a gift for complicating them if I’m not careful. I have to remember to do three key things if I am going to keep the train on the track.
For me, the three keys for learning to be still are remembering to:
1. Keep things simple.
2. Let go and let God.
3. Do the next right thing.
“Be still, and know that I am God!I will be honored by every nation. I will be honored throughout the world.”Psalm 46:10 (New Living Translation)
During the holidays, things can quickly get out of hand and turn complicated. That festive occasion you were looking forward to suddenly becomes an unexpected burden. The family gathering you’ve been preparing for abruptly turns sour when unresolved issues bubble to the surface. Worse yet, while everyone is off celebrating, you find yourself alone, feeling unloved and forgotten. This is challenging even for the general population. For the recovering addict—these things can turn deadly.
During the holiday season, you can get out of rhythm and out of sync quickly. You forget to work the program. You get stretched beyond your limits. You face temptation to drink or use. You struggle with seeking attention or earning the approval of others. You worry about things that are not in your control. Your angst level shoots to plus 11.
Being in recovery means taking care of yourself so that you can be a help to those around you. You don’t have to do it all. As a matter of fact, you don’t have to do any of it.
Be still in the presence of the Lord,and wait patiently for him to act. Don’t worry about evil people who prosper or fret about their wicked schemes.Psalm 37:7 (New Living Translation)
God is there with you. He hasn’t abandoned you. Grab His hand and walk alongside Him during this season. Remember that this is a time for anticipation and celebration.
Remembering that most good ideas are simple is an excellent concept we need to keep near to our heart and at the top of our minds. Especially as addicts. But also as believers. We need to trust the Lord with our past, present, and future. For us, it’s imperative we focus on today. What’s my best next step? Do that.
It’s amazing when we let God do the directing in our lives. The results are incredible and far beyond anything we could ever imagine. He is trustworthy. Let Him take the wheel.
For us, it’s about doing the work in front of us and not getting too far ahead of ourselves. It is in that state that we find He is our peace.
May your soul rise up to meet the Lord as the day rises to greet the Sun.
The Devotional Guy™