This is something that the Lord has really been impressing on my heart lately in so many ways.
You see, last year, I went through several hard periods of busyness, difficult times with my job, stressful periods where I had put too much on myself. I hesitate to use the word Depression because I know there are some people who struggle with this greatly, but honestly, it felt like there was a black cloud hanging over my head. I would come home at night and cry. All the time.
I knew I had Jesus. I knew there was joy available to me, I just didn’t know what to do other than beg for some of it.
God pulled me out of each of those seasons and I learned a lot through them.
But something happened last week.
I worked 40 hours (which is a LOT for me in a fast-paced, on my feet all day, post-holiday retail crazy environment). I felt like I hadn’t seen home in days. There were difficult relational issues I was going through at work and several negativities popped up.
But when the week was over, I felt like I stood up on Sunday, looked back at my crazy week and my jaw dropped. Going through a week like that six months ago would have had me in tears and wishing with all my heart that I didn’t have to go back to work the next day. I would have felt overwhelmed, oppressed, depressed and crawling into my shell.
But I wasn’t depressed.
I thanked the Lord first and foremost, but as I contemplated what the difference was between now and six months to a year ago, I realized that it was all about my headspace.
I have spent the last two weeks in probably the most dedicated time of seeking the Lord on a daily basis that I ever have in my life. I felt like a cup of tea, being steeped in the Holy Spirit’s special blend. Mornings, if I was home, I would have my quiet time, times of which would be spent with a quiet heart, just listening to what God had to say. I have taken up two-way journaling, where we pour out our hearts to God and listen for what He has to say back. It has been a humbling and beautiful experience. On mornings when I couldn’t sit down before work, I would be listening to worship music while getting ready for the day.
I realized that by spending time in His presence, my mind was steeped in Him, and He gave me the strength and joy to make it through each day.
I realized that what frame of mind I am in and where my mind is fixed is so important to my mental wellbeing. Was I still stressed sometimes last week? Of course! Was I dog-tired and ready for bed? Yes. Did I still shed a tear or two at the very end of the week just from the release of all the tension? You betcha!
But, I felt raring to go the next day. I felt at peace throughout the week. I felt like He walked with me through the difficult times and guided me in how to respond. It wasn’t that he was never there before, the difference was that this time, I was looking for and acknowledging Him there with me.
So, I encourage you. Where is your head at? Are you dwelling on your worries? The things that stress you out? The issues that feel like popcorn jumping at you from every angle?
Or are you fixed on the Creator of the universe? The one who holds all of your cares in His hands and walks with you through your trials? Are you focusing your mind on His promises and dwelling in His presence?
Open your eyes. But more importantly, open your heart. Look for Him. Listen to Him.
“You keep him in perfect peace whose mind is stayed on you, because he trusts in you.” Is. 26:3
Where is your head at?
By God’s Grace,