Confession time… I’m a comfort eater. When I’m stressed, disappointed, frustrated and generally sad, sugar and carbs become my friends. Eating doesn’t actually fix anything, it makes me feel worse in fact, but as I desperately search for something to rescue me from pain, something inside of me thinks that food is the answer.
Confession two… There are days when I wake up and question “what the heck I’m doing with my life?” And when it takes too long to find a satisfying answer, I just want to go back to bed.
Tormenting thoughts and feelings that make life extra hard sometimes… emptiness, loneliness, impatience, discomfort, dissatisfaction, anger, jealousy, discouragement, confusion…
I often find that it’s times like these when I look at those around me and everyone else seems to be getting promotions, starting a new relationship, getting engaged, going on a holiday and just generally living the dream… MY dream.
And sometimes it’s way too exhausting to talk myself out of my rut.
Deep within me, I know that everything is going to work out fine… it always does… I believe that God created me, He loves me and has designed my life to be the most incredible, fulfilling and inspiring life… but I’m also pretty used to the idea of him allowing bumps in life to shape me into a greater person…
But it doesn’t feel nice.
And what am I supposed to do in the meantime?
Here’s what happened…
I was chatting to a friend who’d just got the most exciting opportunity to travel overseas for work… I choose to be excited for them and cheer them on as they live the dream.
I was at the shops and I saw a lady slip over, dragging her pram and baby to the ground… I rushed over and did whatever I could to help her.
I talked to a friend who’d just been diagnosed with cancer and was traumatised… I stopped everything to comfort her.
Another friend had a birthday… I cooked her dinner, bought her presents and made her day special for her.
I was praying and telling God how frustrated and impatient I was, I then realised He had already heard this from me for 3 days in a row… So I started praying for God to bless my travelling friend, I prayed for God to comfort and heal my sick friend, I prayed for my family, my Pastors, my friends, my enemies, and the random person in the car next to me.
The list goes on.
Gradually, something changed in me…
I remembered that the world is so much bigger than my little cocoon of emotion.
I realised that others actually need my love and encouragement.
I found a sense of purpose as I loved others. In fact I even started to get excited that God could use my prayers or acts of kindness to bless someone else.
And there are opportunities everywhere.
I kinda felt silly for ever considering going back to bed… I don’t need sleep, I just need to love.
I felt heaps better, because I’ve decided that there’s not much I can do to change my circumstances, but I’m not gonna waste my life depressed and desperately waiting for something to cheer me up.
It starts off as a distraction from my pain, and becomes a passionate determination to make other people’s lives better.
I’ve transitioned from bitter hopelessness to a confident sense of purpose.
The kinda life I dream of.
Are you stuck in an emotional rut?
I wonder what would happen if you went and found someone to love.
“And I have been a constant example of how you can help those in need by working hard. You should remember the words of the Lord Jesus: ‘It is more blessed to give than to receive.’” (Acts 20:35 NLT)