Crisis! Have you ever been faced with a crisis, which brought up feelings of anger, hatred, or hurt within you? How did you react to the situation? Did you verbally of physically lash out at the people around you? Did you say things that you would not have said otherwise?
Crisis, Unfortunately, happens! I am sure that many of us have been in situations which caused us emotional distress. I am even certain that we have reacted in ways that may have even surprised us.
Recently as I pondered on the issue of how we react when we are faced with problems, I realized, it is not just so much the issue we face that affects us, but how we deal with it. When we are in a situation which causes us to experience strong emotions, some of us do not think rationally. Sometimes, in the heat of the moment we do or say things we will later regret. Our actions may result in harm to ourselves or others and may not always be revocable.
Perspectives on Handling Stressful Situations
The good news is that not everyone reacts negatively in a crisis. Some people are quite good at dealing with emotionally intense situations without showing any visible signs of their suffering. I always wondered how they managed to do so. Then, just recently a male friend and I was having a conversation and he told me he was one of those persons who reacted violently when he was in his teens and almost harmed another teenager. After the incident, he had an awakening which caused him to always concentrate on keeping his feelings in check regardless of the situation.
But, some of us are not like my friend; we have a hard time controlling our emotions. For example, we may be in a situation where we believe we are being treated unfairly. In our efforts to explain ourselves we end up giving the issue too much significance and before we know it we end up in an argument which we never intended in the first place. One thing I have realized is that sometimes it is better to let your silence speak than to try to explain yourself, especially when the other party has already formed an opinion of the situation. With crisis comes feelings of disappointment. Read my blog on Disappointment: Do Not Take it so Disappointingly.
Handling Stressful Situations, A Spiritual Perspective
As I looked at crisis from a spiritual perspective, I realized that there is another way, besides self-control which can help us in our day of crisis. Perla (2008) in his book “Always Joyful: Experiencing God’s Love” urged us not to make rash decision, but to seek God when we are experiencing a painful situation. He reasoned that once we seek God, we will know what we should do and may avoid making mistakes and causing ourselves more pain.
When I first read the advice by Perla, I was a bit skeptical. I doubted whether I will know if God spoke to me. I doubted whether I will be rational enough to take His advice. Nevertheless, I told myself the only way to find out if his advice has merit is to be mindful the next time I am in a crisis and pray to God first before reacting. Since I have read this advice I cannot tell you how many times I have practiced praying first before making a decision. Whether the situation is a crisis or not, I have made it a habit to pray before making any major decisions in my life. I am happy to say that although some decisions do not go according to my expectations, I end up feeling less stressed at the end of it all.
Make it A Habit to Seek God
So how can we apply the concept of praying when faced with difficult situations? First, I urge that we make it a habit to always seek God so that when we are experiencing a crisis we will know where to find him. The thing about forming habit is that once formed they are very difficult to break. Even when we are not in our comfort zone our actions become natural to us. One of my favorite verses to repeat is Psalms 46: 10 ” Be still, and know that I am God: I will be exalted among the heathen, I will be exalted in the earth. I can recall the first time I saw this verse. I was upset about a personal situation I was facing and during my ranting the paper calendar I had on the wall fell on the counter next to me. It was blown down by the wind.
As I looked at it, the words “Be still, and know that I am God” glared at me. For a moment I was taken aback as I considered what it really meant. After a few moments, the full force of those words sank in and just as the anger came, it left my body. I kept repeating those words, I knew that it was no accident that the calendar fell. These words were meant to give me comfort and help me keep the faith that everything was going to be fine. And they were. Whatever it is you are going through, always remember that God is bigger than all our problems. We need only trust him and allow him to lead us.
Thank you for stopping by and reading. i Hope that this article was a blessing to you. Please share this post to someone who you think will benefit from another perspective to dealing with a crisis.