Finding yourself in a deep, dark place is incredibly defeating. You may feel so stuck and overwhelmed, even abandoned and alone. I must encourage you, sister, that the Lord is WITH you in the deep. Not because I say He is, but because He does…
Check out what Isaiah says,
“For thus says the One who is high and lifted up, who inhabits eternity, whose name is Holy: “I dwell in the high and holy place, and also with him who is of a contrite and lowly spirit, to revive the spirit of the lowly, and to revive the heart of the contrite.” (57:15, ESV)
Here are 5 Ways to respond when you are struggling “in the deep”:
Change your physical state.
Take a step to change the dynamic of your physical state. Do a workout. Go for a walk. Have a 5-10 minute dance party. Break up the monotony of your down-trodden routine and inject some life into the dark place where you have found yourself.
Check out how Jesus healed the invalid man in John 5…
“When Jesus saw him lying there and knew that he had already been there a long time, he said to him, “Do you want to be healed?” 7The sick man answered him, “Sir, I have no one to put me into the pool when the water is stirred up, and while I am going another steps down before me.”8Jesus said to him, “Get up, take up your bed, and walk.” 9And at once the man was healed, and he took up his bed and walked.”
He literally called him to change his physical state as he an act of healing. Our healing happened at the cross, and is happening every time a sister or brother comes to Christ as their Savior! It’s backdated to the date Christ death in sacrifice for our sins. How cool?! So, don’t live in defeat. Do something to change your flesh and invigorate life.
Wrestle (for your blessing).
In Genesis 32, Jacob wrestles with a man all night, and refuses to give up until he receives a blessing. This man was was God, who said, “Let me go, for the day has broken.” But Jacob said, “I will not let you go unless you bless me.” Jacob’s determination was either ridiculously arrogant, or so firmly rooted in his confidence that he deserved the blessing that he was reckless enough to cling for dear life and demand it. Cling for dear life to your identity in Christ! You have been granted blessing!
For as much as you need to wrestle, you also need to rest. The more you fight quicksand, the further stuck you become, right?
Psalm 37:7 reminds us, “Be still before the LORD and wait patiently for him; fret not yourself over the one who prospers in his way,
over the man who carries out evil devices!”
Are you allowing God to fight for you? Are you resting in His sacrifice?
Renew your mind.
This is an often-missed and foundational principle and action step that every believer needs to not just understand, but apply and develop skill to have a successful Christian life.
Romans 12:2, “Do not be conformed to this world,[fn] but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect.” ESV
According to Larry Pierce, creator of the Online Bible, the Outline of Biblical Usage is, “renewal, renovation, complete change for the better”. Consider fixing up an old car, restoring a piece of furniture, or even fixing a bad dye-job on your hair!
These things have to be completely renewed to bring them back to their glory. This has to happen in your mind on a daily basis. Get in God’s Word!
Rejoice! (be grateful)
This is the simplest step of all, and you can literally start doing it RIGHT NOW! Paul reminds us in 1 Thessalonians 5:18, “give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.”
Find at least one small thing to be grateful for–this doesn’t have to be the trial, or some super-spiritual aspect of your life (though that’s great if you are there). Just a small thing: what you ate for breakfast, the fun shoes you are wearing, or getting a parking spot. God cares about every detail of your life, and you can honor Him even in the deep by practicing gratefulness. Rejoice over something good in your life!