I am listening to Living On The Edge’s teaching, Balancing Life’s Demands, again.
Chip Ingram touched on the six symptoms that your priorities might be out of whack. He really hit the nail on the head and, unfortunately, he described me to a ‘T’.
Busyness. Goodness, yes. But…here is the key. I am always busy, but my life is barren of fruit. There is stuff everywhere. Things that I am going to get to, but simply haven’t yet.
Emotional stress and pressure. Anxiety. Uptight all the time. Headaches. Restless. Racing thoughts. I was recently telling a friend how I felt like my heart would often race and that I often felt unsettled. She told me that I had an issue with anxiety. Sounds about right.
Low-grade nagging guilt. Feeling bad about myself. There are so many things that I know I’m supposed to do, but don’t do (or haven’t done yet). While I realize that nobody has it all together, I constantly feel like I don’t measure up.
Financial debt. Not only are we holding credit card debt (again), but we are also not being faithful in giving regularly and sacrificially back to the Lord.
Prayerlessness. Most of my prayers are when I am with others. At church. Or at mealtimes. I prayed a quick prayer with and for my son on the way to his job interview. Those quick ‘check-ins’ are my current prayer life. It has been a long time where I have had an honest, deep connection with my Lord.
Excessive behavior. For me, I realize that I have taken my ‘downtime’ to be something that I convince myself that I deserve. Lots of TV time, lots of time browsing the internet and on social media, eating junk food. These things aren’t – in and of their own – bad. But, I have realized that these little things become an overall issue in my life as they are my crutch.
Another area that I feel convicted to work on is relationships. You see, God focuses on relationships. If it were not for Him putting really good (and patient) people in my life, I would likely be a total loner as I do not prioritize my relationships at all in this season of life. I consistently allow all of the ‘busyness’ of my life to crowd out the things that I would state are my priorities. In other words, my actions and behaviors do not accurately reflect my priorities.
Can you relate to feeling less than ‘on point’ in any of the above areas? The Good News is that our feelings are not reality. If you are God’s child, these so-called failures that are so easy for us to focus on are NOT what God sees when He sees us. He sees someone that He loves and cherishes so much that He died in order to be able to spend eternity with you. With me. Let that sink in for a moment. You are valued so highly by the very One that created you.
So, while I think we are wise to be sensitive to the convictions God give us, and we should strive to have our lives be a testimony of God’s goodness and grace, we also need to recognize when our self-talk is destructive. Those feelings and thoughts are not from the Lord. When I start to feel down and I know I’m losing out to my inner critic, I like to be able to turn to his Word. I have found the following helpful:
What do you find helpful? I’d love to hear from you. Help a sister out. 🙂