One day last week, I had a pretty trying morning. I received some news that just put me in an immediate funk. I was at the gym and literally had to hold it together, but inside I was nowhere near alright. After getting this news (which is not really the focal point of this post), I was furious, upset, irritated, you name it. I just wanted to cry. Then I wanted to go off. I wanted to be petty. I essentially wanted to take off my “adult” title and be free to handle the situation without any repercussions. In my head I was running down the list of horrible ways I was going to react. I knew I was being extreme, but in that moment I didn’t care.
I completed my last 13 minutes on the elliptical then it hit me that I needed to get it together before I just threw in the towel on being an adult. Somehow, I realized how I needed to redirect my attention so as not to overact. Then I literally felt God trying to grab my attention. It was so weird, because I honestly just wanted to be in my feelings and forget this whole “mature adult” thing. Still, God was right there with me. It was like He was tapping my shoulder letting me know He was there. I needed that.
I decided that I would give in to His call and just see where it would take me. I felt a peace as I began to turn my thoughts towards God, rather than continue in the negative thoughts field-day I was having. The issue at hand wasn’t 100% solved, but I was heading towards a different space. It was crazy how quick my view was changing, despite the lack of change in the situation. It was like a light bulb went off and I realized how important it is for me to just make the choice to involve God, even in the madness. I know many people will say it is healthy to be in the moment with your emotions; and I totally agree! It is healthy to feel, but not every feeling is healthy to act upon. For me, early in life, I had to learn that the way my personality is set up, I have to quickly take control of my emotions. I am not the type of person who can bask in being angry, upset, sad or whatever. Once I am in an emotional space my thoughts just spiral way to quickly and any decision made in this space will surely be irrational.
So back to involving God. In less than 15 minutes I made the decision to allow God into the madness. It took almost 15 minutes, because, like I said, I wanted to be mad. Surprisingly there is a scripture that addresses this exact thing. Ephesians 4:26-7 says, “Be angry, and do not sin: do not let the sun go down on your wrath, nor give place to the devil”. This verse is perfect! Being angry is not the problem, it is how you react to being angry that can be the problem. For myself, to make it applicable to all of my life, I replace the word “angry” with every emotion possible and remind myself, in times of emotion, not to sin, do something wrong, do something out of character, etc. If we are instructed not to give place to the devil, then that means it is possible to give place to someone else. This is where the decision comes in. In my time of frustration that day, I had to make the tough decision to give place to God or the devil. Thankfully I made the right decision and was able to handle the situation more adult-like than I had initially planned. I felt better, especially because I avoided making some irrational moves that would have surely had negative consequences.
Isn’t there a quote that says something about life being a series of decisions (I will find it and post to my IG later)? I have learned that one of the most important decisions I can make is to give place to God in every area or my life…even when I don’t want to. I do this by literally just talking to God about how I am feeling. I tell Him how mad (insert any emotion) I am and I even tell Him how I would like to handle it. Then I listen and allow Him to guide me the right way. In the end things always turn out much better, all because of the decision to involve Him.
Being an adult is certainly hard. We are held to a higher standard and the people expect more from us. However, I can speak from my own experience and tell you that giving place to God is the only way I am able to continue adulting through life with all its challenges. My question for you is who/what are you giving place to in your times of struggle?