by Pastor Tim Burt
Most people have at one time or another experienced what feels like an overwhelming hurt, anger and pain at the hand of another person. There can be so much emotional resentment built up in you that you feel almost numb. You can't think. You don't feel like doing anything. You just want to shut your eyes and escape.
I pray that none of you are in this state of mind and heart today but chances are, you've felt like this at some time in your life and that you will feel like this again. What can we do at times like this? What should we do when we feel so overwhelmed and out of control by circumstances around us that we can't focus or think straight?
I'll give you a possible suggestion at the risk that you might think it overly simplistic. I don't think it is. I believe it will work almost all the time. It’s something I learned by observation. My father-in-law executed it perfectly and repeatedly when my children were small. It's the art of distraction.
You know how little kids are. They get upset easily and over the most ridiculous things. (Much like adults do only they don’t want to admit they are acting like children.) They scream, the cry, they get upset and can be difficult to get under control. My father-in-law was the master of distraction when my kids got this way. He simply drew their attention to something else long enough to forget what they were upset about. It worked and it was amazing!
When a person is feeling overwhelmed, negative thoughts recycled over and over are usually the greatest contributor of that feelings of being overwhelmed. Stay in one place and keep your mind on those negative thoughts and you will stay in that smothering state of mind. Do something that distracts your thoughts elsewhere and you can begin to find light and your way of escape.
You can probably remember a time when you were really mad at someone when suddenly the telephone rang or somebody walked in on you and interrupted the moment. Because you didn't want them to see you angry, you quickly put on a fake face and had a normal conversation with them, even talking and laughing with them. It probably distracted you enough to partially forget what was bothering you before they came along. When they left, you may have gone back and continued to be mad, but if you did, it was only because you've made the decision to be.
There is another and even better distraction. It’s called spending time in the Word of God. At first you might read for a while and catch yourself thinking about everything but what you are reading. At that point what you are reading is doing no good. It's not penetrating. Your mind is still elsewhere. But if you will ask God to help you focus on what you read, He will help you! As you begin to see, hear, and think about the words you are reading, His Word can get through to you and begin to take your heart to a better place.
On this Spirit-led journey you may stumble across some scripture like Prov 20:9 that says, "Who can say, 'I have kept my heart pure; I am clean and without sin?'" That verse may speak to your heart and soon you'll hear the Holy Spirit say, "You've blown it too so why don't you cut them some slack!" You may stumble across others scriptures that begin to speak to your heart and soften the trouble your feeling. You begin to experience a refreshing of mercy, grace, and forgiveness, as well as instruction for what to do.
You may drift over to Isa 55:6 that jars you saying, "Seek the LORD while He may be found; call on Him while He is near. Let the wicked forsake his way and the evil man his thoughts. Let him turn to the LORD, and He will have mercy on him, and to our God, for He will freely pardon.”
Have you ever tried to fly a kite when there was no wind? You run and run trying to get that thing in the air wanting it to stay up. As soon as you stop running, it crashes to the ground. That is what happens when we try to resolve negative feelings and circumstances ourselves. We are trying to fly a kite with no wind. When we let negative thoughts be positively distracted by the power of God's Word and let it breathe life and promise back into our lives, then the Holy Spirit can blow and keep that kite of hope in the air.
Isaiah 55:11 says,“…My word that goes out from my mouth: It will not return to me empty, but will accomplish what I desire and achieve the purpose for which I sent it.”
Read these words again. "My word that goes out from My mouth: It will not return to Me empty, but will accomplish what I desire and achieve the purpose for which I sent it." These are words of promise. God is near. He is bigger than you. He is smarter than you. And He promises to heal you and help you move forward in forgiveness or through your hard circumstances. That’s what I call a Holy Ghost distraction designed to get your mind off what is bad and back on what is good. And… He promises that His Word will work in you if you give yourself over to it.
It will work in you! It won’t return void. Let God's Word do what it was meant to do in your life. Pray first asking Him to speak to you and then be helped and refreshed as He ministers to your heart! Amen!
In His Love,
Pastor Tim Burt
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Published by Pastor Tim Burt
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