This last year has been hard. Good, but hard. More than once I’ve looked at Nate and asked “are we done with war yet? Is it time for Disneyland yet?” (our analogy for easy peasy times).
As much as I wanted to ignore it, the Holy Spirit told me that a time of warfare was coming and to prepare. Thankfully I listened, mostly. Not quite as well as I wish I had though.
Among the hard things we’ve gone through this year either ourselves or with our friends, was nearly 2 weeks total in the hospital with our baby girl.
I’ll not bore you with medical details, but know this, she is totally healed!
There are no ongoing issues or permanent damage. Praise God!
The first hospital stay was NOT planned. The second was. And while I will be the first to say that hospitals are NOT my favorite place in the world, I will tell you that I am thankful for them.
And just like any other place, it IS possible to be a carrier of the presence and peace and joy of God while you are there.
Most of all know this:
God is NOT the author of the confusion and crisis. Jesus came to bring us LIFE and life abundantly, to the full till it overflows. Satan is the one who comes to steal, kill, and destroy.
John 10:10 The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full.
We do not war against flesh and blood, but against rulers and principalities, and forces of this dark world. (See Eph 6:12)
We do not fight FOR victory but FROM a place of victory enforcing the triumph that Jesus already won.
God is faithful even when we are faithless (See 2 Tim 2:13)
Nobody wants to go through a time of crisis,
but here are 8 practical tips to help you or a loved one handle a crisis in a healthy way.
1. You cannot expect your “normal” routine.
I know that this kind of goes without saying, but sometimes you need to admit to yourself that things are not “normal” right now and its ok. It won’t be like this forever.
2. Intentionally praise and worship at least daily
There is nothing, and I mean NOTHING that will bring peace to your heart and change the atmosphere like getting into the presence of God. This is a habit that you can (and should) begin to cultivate when things are good and life is easy. The more you cultivate this ability, the easier it is to just “step over” into the Presence of God when you need to. Here are a few of our current favorite worship songs.
3. Read familiar, life giving scriptures
God bless Leviticus, but that’s probably not what your heart needs reminded of when faced with scary news. Read, re-read, and declare out loud the passages of scripture that have brought peace and comfort to your heart year after year.
Here are a few of our favorites. Feel free to steal them.
So do not fear, for I am with you;
do not be dismayed, for I am your God.
I will strengthen you and help you;
I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.
4. Speak (out loud) specific scripture over your situation.
Jesus did this every time the enemy came at him during his 40 day stent in the wilderness. If you are battling fear, declare “God has not given me a spirit of fear, but of power, of love, and of a sound mind.” (See 2 Time 1:7) Don’t just let the enemy continue to attack you. Use your sword to disarm him.
5. Ask for specific help
I am constantly blown away by our family, friends and church family. The first hospital stay was COMPLETELY unexpected. But we had more people offering to help than we had jobs to give. Asking for very specific help will really take a load off your shoulders and allow those who truly want to help be of service.
6. Take care of yourself physically as best as you can
I know that sometimes sleep is a rather elusive thing in times of crisis. Hospital beds are nobody’s fav and sometimes the sheer need of care eliminates much opportunity for sleep. Do the best you can. Making the healthiest food choices possible is a great way to help your body handle the stress and unusual demands.
Go for a quick walk if you can.
7. Ask for specific prayers
One of my favorite things to do was to ask the Doctor “what do we need to see in her to progress to the next step?” He would tell me and then that’s how we would pray. An awesome community of believers will want to be praying with and for you. We would periodically send updates and specific prayer requests. Asking for specific prayers is a great way to keep everyone in unity and believing for the same thing.
8. Have a liaison for different sides of the family and different groups of Bible believing friends.
You will be better able to cope with the situation and handle the thing right in front of you if you are not constantly on your phone. Have a few people that you update and then give them the job of updating others. It simplifies things and helps reduce your stress level.
This is just my opinion, but I think that you could back it biblically… We intentionally do not tell everyone on our social media channels when we are going through something hard. We may share publicly when we are through a challenge with the purpose of helping others and telling how good God is. However, we don’t feel like it’s wise to share current major battles with people who are not in our close circle of believing friends. I would much rather have a smaller community of like-minded, Bible believing, Word Speaking friends and family praying than a group of thousands of well-meaning strangers worrying.
Remember this: Jesus is still King of Kings in the middle of ANY crisis. This did NOT catch Him off guard. He has already seen ahead and made provision for your victory and extravagant redemption.