• Ron

How To Get Up When You Feel So Down

How To Get Up When You Feel So Down… Pt 1

There was a national pole taken this week that says Americans are more depressed, worried and discouraged than any time they can remember in their life.

When a crisis, a tragedy or a setback occurs many don’t know how to get on with their lives and they don’t know what to do next.”

What do you do after you’ve received a major body blow to your life? What do you do when your life falls apart? How do you find the strength to get up and go on in a tragedy? We all will face tragedies in life, so it’s important to learn how to deal with them.

There was a man in the Bible who asked that question many years ago. His name was Jeremiah. Jeremiah went through one of the most horrendous periods of history in his nation Israel when an enemy nation came in and ravaged his entire nation. In fact took the entire nation captive slaves and took them out of their homeland. And during Jeremiah’s lifetime he watched enormous atrocities – inhumanities done to his people, to his family, to those that he loved. And he wrote it all down in two books of the Bible called the Book of Jeremiah and the Book of Lamentations.

Jeremiah wrote what he lived and he lived what he wrote. In the middle of a national tragedy He said, “We have suffered terror and pitfalls, ruin and destruction. Streams of tears flow from my eyes because of the destruction of my people.” Then he says, “I have cried until the tears no longer come. My heart is broken, my spirit poured out as I see what has happened to my people.”

I want to talk about how one keeps on going. How do you find the strength to go on after a personal tragedy, crisis, or setback?

In Jeremiah’s case God told him to do (4) four things. You’re going to need this material so I encourage you to print this and save it because at some point in your life when you face a personal crisis, a personal tragedy you’re going to need to know what to do when those road winds hit and your life seems to be falling apart. Again, let me suggest you pay close attention to these four things…

1. Focus your attention on God.

This is not just some trite instruction. This is the first thing you do. You focus your attention on God. You have to make time to be quiet. Get alone with God, be with Him and just listen to God. Lamentations 3:28-30 (Message) “When life is heavy and hard to take, go off by yourself. Enter the silence. Bow in prayer. Don’t ask questions. Wait for hope to appear.”

Did you know that God wants to talk to you? God wants to talk to you more than you want to listen. I’ve met a lot of people who are “open-minded” but they don’t think at all that God would ever talk to them. The reason He doesn’t is they don’t want to listen. But the number one reason why we don’t hear God talk to us is we’re too busy. You know on Mother’s Day when you try to call your mom and they say, “All circuits are busy.” Does God ever get a busy signal from you?  When was the last time you just sat down and were quiet for 10-15 minutes? You didn’t read anything. You just sat there in quietness. My guess is that many of you have never in your entire life asked the question, “God, is there anything You want to say to me right now?” And you just sat and listened.

I want to challenge you this week if you want to get the strength to go on what you need to do is set aside a time everyday, a quiet time – 10 minutes, maybe 15 where you go out in your back yard or you sit at a table in your favorite chair, get a cup of coffee, a cup of tea, a coke or something and you sit down and become very still and very quiet. One day a week is sufficient. I encourage you to form a habit of this practice. Later you may incorporate reading the Bible or praying but for now, sit still and just listen.

Next week we will take a look at the second thing God told Jeremiah to do.

How To Get Up When You Feel So Down…Part 2

Last week we said the first thing you must do to get up when you feel down is to focus your attention solely on God. Now that you have focused on Him you can move to the next step.

2. Ask God to remove your fears.

When we experience a tragedy or a set back we feel all kinds of emotions. We feel grief, we feel confusion, we feel doubt, we feel anger, and we feel frustration. All of these are emotions we have to deal with. But there’s one emotion that is more deadly, more damaging than all the others. That is fear.

It is usually not grief or anger that paralyzes us, but rather fear. If you’re going to get on with your life after a tragedy or set back you’re going to have to deal with the root of the fears and anxieties in your life. So Jeremiah prays this in Lamentations 3 “From the bottom of the pit [he’s really in despair][ever been there] I cried out to You, O Lord. And when I begged You to listen to my cry You heard me. And You answered me and told me not to be afraid.”

Ann Landers would often receive over 10,000 letters a day. Once when she was asked what’s the most common problem people write about, without hesitation she said “Fear”.

Everybody has hidden fears. We may fake it. We may pretend like we don’t have them. We may cover them up. We may medicate them. But the truth is everybody has fears.

The Bible tells us how to deal with our fears. I am presently thinking of at least three antidotes to fear. TRUTH – LOVE – FAITH

TRUTH – Jesus said, “The truth will set you free.” How is that an antidote to fear? Because most fears are based on ignorance or false information. They’re based not on the truth but on lies, misperception, misunderstandings, prejudices. That’s where most fears come from. As a human being you’re only born with two fears: as a baby it was the fear of falling and the fear of loud noses. That means every other fear in your life you learned.

You learned it from friends, from parents, from people on the playground, from people you work with, and the many experiences of life. Here’s the bad news: a lot of things you’ve learned in life aren’t true. Things you learned about yourself, the way you see yourself, things about God, things about the Bible, and things about life experiences.

When you build your life on those faulty assumptions and misbeliefs, the more misbelief you have in your life the more fear you’re going to have in life. You have all these things that cause the fears. [FEAR – False Evidence Appearing Real] That’s what Fear is. We’re afraid of things that we don’t need to be afraid of because much of our lives have been built on lies, misperception, misunderstandings, and prejudices.

You can’t just get of fear by saying, “I’m not going to be afraid anymore.” You have to replace the fear with truth in your life. The more you fill your life with truth – God’s truth – the more truth you have in your mind the less room there is for fear. You put in the truth and the truth will set you free.

You learned all your fears – that’s the bad news. The good news is you can unlearn them.

LOVE – The second way you get rid of fear is by filling your life with love. The Bible says, “There is no fear in love but perfect love casts out all fear.” It pushes it out. So the more of God’s love you have in your life and the more you give it away, the more you’re going to be confident and the less you’re going to be afraid. If you have a lot of fears in your life it tells me one thing: you don’t know God very well.

You see God is love, and love is always stronger than fear. What motivates a parent to run out into a street in oncoming traffic (a very fearful thing) when a child’s out there? It’s the love for that child. Love is always greater than fear. And if you fill your life with God’s love you’re going to have less fear. So build more love into your life.

FAITH – The third thing that reduces fear in your life is Faith. Let me tell you how this works. Faith doesn’t eliminate the feelings of fear. It gives you the courage to do what you need to do in spite of how you feel. That’s what faith does. Faith does not say it’ll take away all your fears and then you will feel really at peace about things. A lot of times faith is “I’ll give you the courage, the power, the energy, the stamina to go ahead and do the very thing you fear the most.”  To do the thing you don’t want to do because you’re scared to death to do it.

A mom was trying to encourage her daughter to jump to her in the pool. “Jump honey, said the mother.” “No mommy, I’m afraid.”  Then her mom said, “Do it afraid, it’s ok.”

Where do you get Faith and Love and Truth? What is the source of those three antidotes to fear?

A relationship to God is a must for one to live a life filled with truth, love and faith. The more you get to know God the more you’re going to have His truth, His love, His faith in your life. What I’m saying is this: all those fears you’ve got in your life, the antidote is not a formula. The antidote is a person. His name is Jesus Christ. The better you get to know Him, the less fear you’re going to have. “I prayed to the Lord and He answered me, freeing me from all my fears.” The antidote to your fears is not a formula it’s a person. It’s Jesus Christ.

It is not an accident that you are reading this. He wanted you to hear me say:  “Don’t be afraid. Don’t worry. Don’t fret. Don’t get anxious. Don’t forget that He can help you up wherever you are, and out of whatever you are into. You don’t have to be afraid. You don’t have to live with fear.” Call out to Him now.

How To Get Up When You Feel So Down…Part 3

In this series about getting up when you feel so down, we have stated that you must first focus you attention on God and then ask Him to remove your fear. The third important step to finding strength to go on is…  

3.  Believing that God will restore you.  </