What goes up will almost certainly come down. After I spent time with some lovely Christian ladies at a retreat in Michigan, I was flying high! When I returned home to laundry and mess and everyday life with no husband (he traveled last week), I went into a tail spin.
This picture of the Blue Angels reminds me of my concern for the air show pilots over Labor Day weekend. Our air show went off without a hitch, but another one in Seattle had a fatal crash. Flying is dangerous–even for expert pilots. And soaring Wonder Women will inevitably experience a nose dive.
So many of us experience change for a time. We’re flying and enjoying the ride. Then we hit some turbulence and suddenly we are ready to crash. What we do in these situations can mean the difference between short-lived change and true victory. Here’s the kind of turbulence we can expect and how to handle it:
1-Not spending time in the Word and prayer? Pray NOW.
When we’re happy or distracted with busyness, Bible reading and prayer are often the first habits to go. If this is you, stop reading and pray for God’s intervention right now! Ask the Super Power to get you out of bed 5 minutes early tomorrow so you can pray. Commit to praying constantly for the rest of the day. Find one Scripture to meditate on, too. Use a search engine like www.biblegateway.com or a concordance. When I did this, the Lord gave me Luke 10:40-42. I was concerning myself with the wrong things!
2-Resentment rather than thankfulness? Give thanks NOW.
Pray with thanksgiving right now for everything you’re thankful for. Then make a list of them to reflect on later. I was annoyed that I had so much work to do when I came home. I pondered my thankfulness for a home, a family, and belongings to care for and I felt better.
3-Not recalling the goal? Remember why you’re flying.
When we lose the vision, we don’t know which way is up and we can lose altitude quickly. Why are you trying to change? Have a picture, a list, or a goal statement written and posted where you can see it frequently. I reflected on the joy and freedom my schedule gives me to lift my spirits.
4-Emotional needs not being met? Meet them in positive ways.
Even though I was a psychologist who should have known better, I was shocked when I discovered that I ate from unacknowledged emotion. In other words, I KNEW people ate to deal with sadness and anxiety. I just didn’t realize I was sad and anxious! Ask yourself what you’re feeling and what you need that is driving the unwanted behavior. Then brainstorm constructive substitutes for meeting the need. When I did this, I realized I was really lonely. Instead of mindlessly surfing the Net to meet that need, I emailed a friend how I was feeling and she gave me a call.
5-Physical needs not being met? Meet them in positive ways.
When I don’t keep a regular bed time, eat good meals, and get enough exercise, I can count on feeling too exhausted to fly. If this is you, get to bed earlier tonight, make yourself a real meal, and go for a walk listening to the praise music of your choice or do any other form of exercise you love.
6-Failed to anticipate the turbulence? Be ready next time!
Think through tonight or tomorrow right now. What obstacles to change do you anticipate? What can you do right now to keep yourself in the air? While I was gone last weekend, I forgot that my house would be a mess and my laundry would be behind. I forgot that I would need a new goal to stay inspired. Even considering this preventive action has me feeling lighter!
I’m praying that what I learned during my nose dive will have you soaring.