Life & Work Are Better When You Do These 3 Things In A Crisis
Crisis has a way of throwing me off center. Crisis comes in a multitude of packages including those that impact your health, relationships, or job. Right now, the pandemic is affecting all of the above for many and there are so many unknowns.
On top of all that’s already in flux, yet another crisis has occurred in my neck of the woods. Many homes and businesses were destroyed or damaged as a result of a violent storm that hit our city on Easter night along with several tornadoes. We thankful to be safe and that only minor damage was done to our home by the four trees that toppled in our yard. It’s been an interesting adventure!
When life is topsy-turvy, I’ve learned that there are three things that keep my life and work on a solid foundation. You could say that these three things anchor me in the storms of life and make everything better! Whatever challenges you are currently facing, I want to encourage you. It is possible to have peace in the storm! Right now the future is a mystery. How life will look a year from now is anyone’s guess. What I do know, is that these three things have made a tremendous difference in my life and work in the midst of crisis:
1. Pursue God
Normally, I start my day by reading my Bible, praying, and connecting with God. I treasure that time. However, a crisis has a way of throwing off my schedule, toying with my emotions, and diverting my attention to the urgent. Yet nothing is more calming than time spent in His presence. That’s why it’s imperative that I fight for this time, even in the midst of turmoil.
In crisis moments, I give myself permission to pursue God in differently, and honestly, sometimes I think it makes Him grin to connect with me in fresh ways! After all, variety spices up any relationship, including my relationship with God!
Whatever your norm is, switch it up. Maybe you spend the day mulling over a scripture or surround yourself with worship music. I often pour out my heart to Him sharing my concerns, doubts, and fears as I navigate my day. Other times I sit in silence attuned to whatever He might want to speak to me.
The point is to pursue God in a way that is meaningful to you in the moment and keep pursuing Him. Knowing that He loves me in a deep and unconditional way is comforting and so is the fact that He is for me! In fact, He is always at work – He never stops!
Unsure of how to initiate a relationship with God? He’s eager to connect with you! Learn more.
2. Keep Connecting
I don’t mind being alone. In fact, I appreciate my alone time! Yet being forced into isolation as a result of Covid-19 has highlighted the fact that I need people in my life.
Beyond the pandemic, crisis has a way of making me feel alone; like I am the only one facing a significant challenge in my life. Crisis makes me feel weak and hesitant to share what I am going through with others. That’s isolating too!
I invite you to get wildly creative right now! Find ways to keep on connecting with the people you value the most in your life. Our family has turned to technology and enjoyed hanging out using Zoom and playing games. It did all of our hearts good to see each other, catch up, and laugh a lot!
Why not write an encouraging note to someone in your circle and send it snail mail! Not only will it give you a boost to bring cheer to someone, but the receiver will also enjoy the lift!
Crisis is a time stealer, but it only takes a few seconds to ask someone to pray for you by text!
Allowing friends and family to support you in the midst of crisis is life giving! So is supporting others in their time of need! There is nothing more discouraging than being alone in your own troubles.
3. Practice Healthy Habits
My habits are an integral part of my routine. It’s much harder to keep up with exercising, getting the sleep I need, eating right, and even getting sunshine when life interrupts my rhythm. This past week we were without electricity for five days and my house was not warm! The idea of heading out for a walk first thing in the morning in 40 degree weather to return to a chilly house – not appealing! Instead I made it a priority to walk every afternoon. Not only is exercise a great stress reliever, but a healthy dose of vitamin D is a great for your immune system too!
When life is at its most stressful, the temptation is to ditch your healthy habits. I want to encourage you to find a way keep on practicing healthy habits – I promise it will serve you well!
In the midst of mayhem, I have to fight to keep doing these three things. They won’t happen without a concerted effort, but, I know from experience that making the choice to continue doing them makes a powerful difference in my life and work!
The truth is that these three things deserve to be a priority under normal circumstances! In fact, they’ve made a valuable contribution to my life and work and led to these discoveries:
1. God Wants Me To Be Transparent
My feelings are not a mystery to God. He already knows! However, sharing my heart with Him in a transparent way demonstrates my trust and desire to be close to Him. He doesn’t care if I’m seriously angry, deeply hurt, frustrated to the max, or very afraid. He wants to hear all about it and I can express my feelings with great abandon – He can take it! And leaving those feelings at His feet is such a relief!
2. God Wants To Refine Me
Yes, He is always at work transforming me into someone more like Him. I’ve got a ways to go, and the “yuck” generally bubbles up in the heat of a crisis. Awareness is the precursor to any change. Crisis naturally allows me to see exactly what needs changing.
3. There’s A Treasure In Crisis
I know that sounds crazy, but there is always something good that comes out of a crisis; a treasure or a gift, even in the worst of circumstances. I’m not glossing over the pain – it’s real! But He turns the terrible into something worth treasuring!
4. There’s Always Hope
I know in the midst of hardship, hope withers. That’s yet another reason why I need to pursue Him. He’s my hope! My circumstances may not turn out the way I expected, but He does have my best in mind!
5. There’s Healing
The hardships I’ve faced in my life have allowed me to encourage and support others facing similar circumstances. That’s healing for me and it’s healing for them! That’s a win-win!
6. Experiencing Him
You would think that I would sense God’s presence when everything is going well. In my experience, exactly the opposite is true! The sweetest encounters I’ve with God have been in the midst some very difficult times! What a comfort that’s been!
While we are all in the pandemic boat together, you may be facing other hard and/or painful circumstances right now. I get it – the challenges often feel insurmountable. May you hold tight to Him; to the treasured people He’s placed in your life and around you at work. And may you trust Him enough to make space to practice life-giving habits in the midst of hard times.
What’s helped you navigate crisis?