Seekers is a podcast focused on answering common life questions through the infinite wisdom of God’s living word – The Holy Bible.
As a new parent of two children under the age of 16 months I’m discovering emotions I never knew existed before. From sensitivities to light and sound, to zombie impersonations during midnight milk runs, to feelings of total failure for not measuring up to what I thought a parent should be. It’s been a time of great joy and great defeat. A time like no other in my life. And in all of the rough feelings and frustrations I find one common denominator – control.
Control feels safe. Control feels familiar. Control leaves less surprises. And when we lose control, negative feelings start to creep in. And yet, so much in life is not in our control at all. We don’t manually pump the heart to beat so many times per minute. We don’t set the air intake for our bodies like we do the thermostat at home. We aren’t driving all the cars around us on the highway on the way to work, or piloting the subway train to ensure it doesn’t hit anything underground. We aren’t in control of so much in life. Maybe that’s why we feel so strongly about what we think we should control, and when things don’t go our way, that’s when frustration emerges.
Take me for example. When I want to sleep all night and the babies have other plans, the expectation of sleep is broken. When I want quiet in the car, and the babies feel inclined to cry in operatic tune, the expectation of quiet is shattered like a glass in front of a chorus of world class sopranos singing in unison. Frustration comes from lack of control and broken expectations as best as I can see.
In this episode of Seekers I look at what the word of God says about frustration, and how we can have peace and serenity always, even in the most chaotic of times.
God, if we’re being honest, we turn to You most in times of despair and darkness. Times in the valley. Times where we see no way out. And Your word provides a lamp to our feet, and a light to our path. Lord I pray what we learn in the trying times sticks with us in the victorious seasons of life. I pray that we turn to you always in all ways to ensure we are walking that narrow way of righteousness. In Jesus name I pray, amen.
Our text verse is
1 God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble.
In Psalm 40:1 we learn three important points, God is our refuge, our strength, and He’s always present.
God wants us to turn to Him. He wants us to know He is our refuge. He is the one we should go to when we’re frustrated, angry, or whatever other emotion you can think of. He is our refuge. What’s a refuge? According to Merriam-Webster refuge is defined as shelter or protection from danger or distress.
Like a boat lost at sea, our bodies send out distress signals in the form of a variety of emotions. From frustration to stress to physical manifestations like sweaty palms and butterfly filled stomachs. When these distress calls go out we need to take shelter in God. How? First by trusting Him, and having faith in Him that He is your personal savior and Lord. Next by reading His word and meditating on it. And finally through prayer and fellowship – as in spending time with Him. If we do these things when frustration comes our way we will be able to find safety. Our sour emotions will fade. And the good Lord will comfort us.
I have to remind myself from time-to-time that God created everything I see and interact with on a daily basis. He created it all. And by focusing on God’s awesome, unfathomable strength, we realize how much He is in control. How He can handle your battles with the blink of an eye, a flick of the wrist, they are nothing to a God that created the Atlantic Ocean, the Himalayan Mountains, and every other wonder of the world in 6 days. God is mightier than anything we’ll ever face.
He’s a Reassuring Presence
The final part of the verse allows us to see God’s here. He’s present. If I have a problem, and I want someone to help me fix it, what good does it do me if they’re out of town and out of touch? The only true way to fix something broken is to be present to do so. Take comfort in knowing that God is here, right now, and he’s in control of not just now, but eternity. That’s an awesome thought.
By understanding God’s will to be a refuge, His unmatchable power, and his omnipresence, we can beat back frustration ten times out of ten.