As it is written: Let us not lose heart in doing good, for in due time we will reap if we do not grow weary.” (Galatians 6:9, NASB95)
I won’t blow sunshine up your nose. Sometimes, not allowing ourselves to grow weary in doing good and not losing heart is the toughest obstacle of all.
When you live with lifelong physical, cognitive, and developmental disabilities as I do, then one of the added challenges you will also face is the challenge of battle fatigue. Even though you want to be positive and keep a good attitude, it sometimes gets exhausting when you realize that you have to constantly work three times as hard to climb the hill, and you only make it half the distance that the average person seems to be able to make from day-to-day. So you constantly feel like you’re working three times as hard to get only half as far. That can get discouraging.
This Sabbath morning started out to be a real challenge. Mentally and emotionally, I was being a real, “Short-circuit Steve.”
Thoughts, worries, fears, anger, sadness, and random muzings on every subject were racing everywhere in my mind with lightning speed and in rapid succession. Think of it as though a tornado was going through your living room, and you’re struggling as hard as you can to keep the room nice and neat and undisturbed. My thoughts were racing like lightning bolts in every direction, with no discernible pattern. It took me about 15 minutes to put on my socks, if that gives you an idea of how disorderly my thoughts were.
Sometimes, one gets frustrated that one has such noticeable challenges to deal with all the time. I was just about to fall into a downward spiral of frustration and battle fatigue. I ran to Abba YHWH as fast as I could. I started praying Psalm 34, and then asking Abba, “How do you want me to deal with this?” Here is the organized summary of the counsel that Abba YAH gave me.
- Remember that YHWH Almighty Loves You: “Remember that I love you. Bring back to your memory all the times that you can think of when you have experienced and felt My love for you.”
- Get rid of unrealistic comparisons and expectations that steal your energy. “You tend to look at everyone else, and you think they are doing so much better than you are. You seem to think that they’re getting so much further in life than you are, and you are struggling three times harder to get only half as far. Here’s the thing though sweetheart. If you only get half as far as the average person, but you do it with love, with faith, with obedience, and with grace in Me, then you still WIN. Another thing. If a tornado goes through the living room, NOBODY would be able to keep the room nice and neat. If that’s your expectation, you’re going to feel like a failure, because no person could reasonably accomplish such a task. In the midst of a tornado, your only goal is to survive the storm, and then pick up the pieces. If you do that with a good attitude, that’s a WIN.”
- Learn not to resent your challenges. Instead choose to look at them as opportunities: “I know that your challenges get exhausting. As hard as it is sometimes, try not to resent your challenges. Instead of being disappointed that the challenges are in-your-face. Try looking at them as an opportunity. “
Think about it this way. “Oh yea! Here is another opportunity where I am going to see Abba Yahweh’s provision and deliverance in my life.
Think about it this way. “Oh yea! Here is an opportunity where I get to practice being a DOER of His Word, and as I do that, I’m going to see fresh blessings in my life. Abba, help me to make the most of this opportunity. Right now, I get to practice not being anxious about anything. Right now, I get to practice bringing everything to Yahweh with prayer and supplication and thanksgiving, and I’m going to get to experience how Yahweh is going to guard my heart and mind in the knowledge of Messiah through this challenge. Thank you that I get to really practice DOING Philippians 4:6-8. Thank you for helping me to remember Your Word, and helping me to apply it correctly in the situation. I am eager to see how You’re going to deliver me in the midst of this. Thank You that I get another opportunity to cast all my cares upon You. Thank you that I get yet another opportunity to practice doing 1 Peter 5:7. Thank You Abba YAH, that You care for me, and that I am going to experience You taking care of me, yet again.”
I am also becoming thoroughly convinced, based on what Abba YHWH is teaching me now that the way in which we choose to look at or perceive our challenges can do a lot to either encourage us, or to discourage us.
We need to learn to look at our challenges, (whatever they may be), in such a way that will help us draw strength from YHWH, and not in a way that will drain our mental and emotional energies, and so make it harder for us to overcome.
May Abba YHWH help us to look at our challenges in such a way that will inspire us and empower us to overcome them. Even as we acknowledge the negatives and the difficulties, (we don’t lie about them or deny them), but help us to look at our challenges MORE as opportunities, rather than focusing on the negatives. This will give us more strength to persevere, until we succeed.
Beloved of YHWH, this is just a sample of how Abba YHWH Almighty got me through the most recent emotional/mental challenge that I’ve experienced. Please understand, I do not mean to suggest that every problem and every mental storm should be easy and quickly resolved. I know as well as anyone how challenging, painful, and debilitating some of our mental battles can be. At the same time, I am CERTAIN that Abba YHWH Almighty is NO respecter of persons. He loves you. He cares about you. He wants you to be able to succeed and overcome, just as much as He desires that for me. So I offer this blog post as just one more component, or one more tool for your toolbox that I hope will be helpful to you in overcoming your own set of challenges.
Blessed be YHWH. I sincerely hope this note was useful in encouraging to you. Thank you for your kind attention. Shalom.
Brother R. Robert Michel Lankford