1. Don’t take on the emotional burdens of others. Yes, we are called to bear one another’s burdens, and that means to provide physical help where possible and to bring those burdens to the Lord on their behalf. It doesn’t mean guessing or imaging what their emotional response is and taking it on as our own. My mom was in the hospital this weekend, the same weekend of a family reunion that she had been counting the days to. I was so sad for my mom missing the reunion. Yet every time I talked to or saw her, she was fine. I kept thinking “how very sad she’ll feel while everyone is at the reunion and she’s in the hospital bed alone.” It turned my world gray for a time – and she was fine! How foolish of me to take on that unnecessary burden. I’m 54 years old, mom has been totally paralyzed on her left side and has had limited use of her right side for more than a dozen years…and she still teaches me things. I want to be like her when I grow up!
  2. Do your best and then have confidence that God’s grace will come through for you! This is especially true when the ground under you seems unstable or the mountain in front of you too high. God’s grace is sufficient and His power is made perfect in our weakness. (2 Corinthians 12:9) The key is to truly have confidence in God – which means stop fretting and look forward to what He will do! (I can’t always do it, but it’s a great way to live – when I’m able to appropriate that grace, life is good, no matter what happens!)
  3. The enemy lives in the shadows. God operates in the light. The enemy operates in the shadows – the “what ifs,” doubts and fears. To extinguish the shadows, turn up the lights – worship, read or meditate on Scripture, sing or hum your favorite hymn, remind yourself of God’s great promises and His unfailing faithfulness. Do whatever it takes to turn up the lights. (John 3:19-21, 8:12)
  4. God’s people are very good. They have your back in this world. And God has your back in the spiritual realm. If you don’t have a church home – one that you attend regularly and where you know people and are known by them – start your search for one immediately. Without a church family you set yourself as easy pickin’s for the enemy.
  5. We really do have a lot of power over how we feel about and respond to life. Like I said earlier, I’m 54 years old. That means I’ve stood in lots of lines in lots of stores. This evening I stood in a relatively short line with the absolutely slowest cashier I’ve ever encountered. I was tempted to get frustrated. After thumbing through two magazines, I was even more tempted. That’s when I noticed the guy in front of me. He had a memorial shirt on for someone who had died serving our country in March of this year. He looked tired, but he waited patiently. It encouraged me to let go of my own agenda and simply wait and smile. I realized during this process that if I had continued on the route to frustration, I would have left that line ten minutes later with an annoyance that would have stayed with me well into the evening. Instead, I left smiling and humming praises to God. I felt good about smiling at the very slow cashier – she probably doesn’t get many people smiling at her. I felt good about conquering frustration for the moment. And I felt really good about the results – feeling blessed instead of annoyed. Gotta love that!

So, faithful readers, I don’t know if any of the above speaks to you, but it seems like a lot to learn in a weekend. God is good! Blessings on your upcoming week!

One Response to “Five Unrelated Things I Learned This Weekend!”
  1. Dolly Miller says:

    This message is so touching about your Mom and I agree, also I hope I can act like you did with the slow cashier,I have very little patience, which I am not proud of, but when I catch myself acting like that I try to improve it and think twice about it

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