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chaos. depression

photo: CCO public domain

I keep trying to find order to my life this year and it doesn’t seem to come. My original plan was to have a word like that as my word for the year. It’s good it wasn’t. I often feel that just as a moment of order is almost within my grasp, something happens to snatch it away!

What good do chaos, randomness and depression serve in our lives? They push us to see our weaknesses and failure and show us where we need Jesus in new ways we weren’t aware before.

Order? A neat life? A life where everything fits neatly together? Is it just outside your grasp?

Your house is starting to come together? You are beginning to catch up and get more things either stowed or tossed? Bam! Some event happens that crashes into your week or month and any semblance of order is gone.

You are catching up on the writing on your blog? You are starting to plan ahead a month? Crunch! A new skill to learn interrupts your routine. A glitch on the computer causes delays in your writing schedule.

Ron is progressing well. He has had some good days lately. Then crash! He has a day when he can’t seem to remember much of anything…or he won’t accept an ounce of help…or…  It sends me into panic and thinking about all the “what if’s” that do nothing to keep my eyes on Jesus or His plans for both of us.

Chaos or depression can push us to see our weaknesses and failures and show us where we need Jesus in new ways. Share on X

You are putzing along after a conference that motivates you and your fellow church friend. It’s Thursday at the leaders’ Bible study planning time. You are discussing a fine point that none of you understands. The pastor leaves the room and you all keep discussing.

For a split second, someone glares at you. It seems like a hateful look. She covers it quickly. The pastor returns. He makes the passage clear. Your comments were irrelevant.

All day long you can’t get that look out of your head. You feel small. You wish you would just keep your mouth shut sometimes. You wish you could remember what you said that brought on such a hateful look. You feel embarrassed and stupid. What made you think you could minister to women anyway? They all hate you.

How is that for a lie? You moved from one apparently hateful look from one woman to being hated by everyone. This is what is called a downward spiral!

The specific details of the words in your head may be different, but anything different from what comes from being “in Christ” will reflect something other than that of being a daughter of the King.

This is a jumble of snapshot scenarios from my head taken on the day I wrote this and the day before! Yes, I’m the one who writes over and over about being accepted in Christ.

I write about the importance of recognizing that Christ proves Himself strong when we are weak. Yet when I am weak or disorganized or finding it more and more difficult to find order in my life, I have a hard time going to Jesus too!

The reality check for me is that when the downward spiral begins or the chaos gets to be too much, I need to find a way to hide out for awhile in the ROCK of Jesus! This morning, these are some of the places I’m hiding out…or have to go, when the randomness and chaos gets to be too much. When the downward spiral starts getting out of control because of the lies repeated in my head.

Hear my cry, O God,
    listen to my prayer;
 from the end of the earth I call to you
    when my heart is faint.
Lead me to the rock
    that is higher than I,
 for you have been my refuge,
    a strong tower against the enemy.

Psalm 61:1-3

 Rejoice in the Lord always; again I will say, rejoice. 
Let your reasonableness be known to everyone.
The Lord is at hand;
do not be anxious about anything,
but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving
let your requests be made known to God.

 And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding,
will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.

Finally, brothers, whatever is true,
whatever is honorable,
whatever is just,
whatever is pure,

whatever is lovely,
whatever is commendable,
if there is any excellence,
if there is anything worthy of praise,
think about these things.
What you have learned and received and heard and seen in me—
practice these things,
and the God of peace will be with you.

Philippians 4:4-9

If you haven’t memorized these passages, they will help you/me. In the meantime, stick them on your refrigerator/mirror/dashboard/the baby’s changing table or a place where you will notice them and read them. They will start to sink in if you read them a few times each day and think you can’t memorize.

Blessings today if you, like me, struggle to live the Christian life amid chaos, craziness and the downward spirals of life. Jesus is with us in all those places. I’m speaking from a place of faith right now. When I stop and pause, truth comes to me. So does faith and glimmers of hope. The interruptions are our ministry, they don’t interrupt our ministry. I wish it weren’t the case. Often our interruptions are our kids or grandkids, or spouses! They are the priority of our ministry. We take them for granted don’t we?

So let us fill our hearts with truth and lean on the Rock as we live out the gospel in the world around us. Preach the gospel to yourself and to each other!