What Do We Do On The Days We Struggle?

by | Apr 9, 2020 | #open2020, Real Life

Yesterday, day 25 of self-isolating and physical distancing with COVID-19, was by far my most challenging day so far.Thankfully I’m healthy, but I found myself struggling throughout the day, emotionally and mentally.

Yesterday was a struggle.

For the first time since this all began, my emotions escaped through tears yesterday morning. It was as if the floodgates opened and there was no stopping the rush of built up emotions. My eyes welled up off and on throughout the day. Even though I don’t particularly like crying (who does?), it was helpful to release what I had been holding in. I am thankful for the tears.

Sometimes it’s through the tears when we receive a clearer perspective, a true reality of the situation. Sometimes those tears are cleansing and purifying for our souls. And sometimes, when we least expect it, the tears just come, and it’s in the letting them fall when we receive healing and restoration.

After all, scripture says God catches every one of our tears.

You have seen me tossing and turning through the night. You have collected all my tears and preserved them in your bottle! You have recorded every one in your book.

Psalm 56:8 TLB

That’s comforting and encouraging, isn’t it? Especially in the times we struggle.

What Do We Do On The Days We Struggle?

Some days the struggle is very real.

Is it for you, too, friend? I hope not, but if you have struggle-filled days, know I’m right there with you. Like yesterday. It came in wave after wave:

  • I also found myself overwhelmed with worry concern about two people in my life who are dealing with health issues. (Honestly, I was worried yesterday, but yes I know, ‘If you worry, don’t pray and if you pray, don’t worry.’ I struggled just to pray at times!)
  • I was frustrated with how fast the day flew past me. They all seem to lately! At the day’s end I looked back and felt I accomplished nothing, even though I worked all the day long. (This is often a daily occurrence.)
  • This extrovert needs to be with people. Some days I feel like I’m shriveling up inside. Yesterday was one of those days.
  • Discouragement and discontentment settled upon me after receiving some disappointing news.

My trials are small compared to some.

I know this. These are all trivial in the big scheme of things. Some people are dealing with much more than this, more serious matters than mine–of job loss, of infection, of death, of depression, and so much more. My heart goes out to many who are struggling in ways I can’t even begin to understand. I won’t pretend that I do. But please know, I’m so very sorry and that you are in my prayers today.

This time is difficult, probably in different ways, for each one of us. I texted a friend in the middle of my struggle yesterday with, “I hate this. I absolutely hate everything about this.” Yes, I used the word hate, Alissa and Zach. (This word wasn’t allowed in our home when our children were young.) But, yesterday, hate described my feelings for this situation. Lord, forgive me.

You and I are doing all we can do to fix this. We are playing our part. Some of us stay home and some of us go to work. Some of us are on the front lines helping others. You and I are doing what we’re called to do in this very trying and stressful time. So, even though we struggle, we can trust we’re not alone. And we can trust God will use our struggles for His good.

So, what do we do when we find ourselves struggling?

What do you do? One of the worst things I can do when I’m struggling is to try to bury how I’m feeling. Believe me, I’ve learned this the hard way. Burying stuff just makes an eruption later even greater. So, I believe it’s good to address our struggles as soon as we can. To acknowledge them, to see them for what they are, and to meet them head on.

I may not have a solution for the struggle, but I can release it in the moment by praying and giving it to God. By handing my struggles over to the One Who can handle them. Because it’s clear, I cannot handle them.

God, you’re such a safe and powerful place to find refuge! You’re a proven help in time of trouble— more than enough and always available whenever I need you.

Psalm 46:1 TPT

God is our refuge. He’s the place we’re safe. He’s also our help whenever we need. More than enough and always available.

It’s as simple as handing them over to God, saying, “God, I can’t handle these struggles. I give them to you today.”

Could our struggles be for good?

Our struggles are never enjoyable. We’d rather avoid them, right? But, they remind us of our need for God. They remind us we can’t do this ourselves. And, they remind us we don’t need to. They also remind us how powerful God is as He works through them on our behalf. Hang in there, friend. Praying for us all as we face this trying time together.

Much love,

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4 Comments

  1. Cindy

    Your post today brought to mind one of my favorite projects I did with my second graders every year: Life Cycle of a Monarch! We’d collect the caterpillars and milkweed, put them in a large glass pickle jar and wait. When they were about to become a chrysalis, my how they would struggle! They’d writhe back and forth like they were fighting what they were going through. We are like that aren’t we? We struggle and fight different things in our lives. Right now it’s the new stage of pandemic life. Here’s the hope: what emerges from the chrysalis is a beautiful butterfly! God’s amazing transforming power takes a struggle and makes it beautiful on the other side! I’m glad to be reminded of that. Thanks for your inspiration Julie!

    Reply
    • Julie Lefebure

      Wow, Cindy! I love this! May I suggest you write a blog post about this?? It’s so good! Thank YOU for your inspiration!

      Reply
      • Cindy

        Well, I took the plunge and turned this comment into a blog post like you suggested! I was very apprehensive about hitting publish, as I know so many are suffering in this time and my words seem so inadequate. But your encouragement helped me follow through. Thank you for believing in me! It’s the first post I’ve written that wasn’t to a given prompt in I don’t know how long!

        Reply
        • Julie Lefebure

          Wonderful, Cindy! I’m stopping over now to read it. Can’t wait!!

          Reply

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