Wednesday, July 10, 2013

When you feel overwhelmed and defeated...

It's been a rough season of months for me in struggling to keep up with my home. To keep up on my chores, keep it tidy, inviting, etc. For me clutter = inner chaos and that is not a good combo. So, I've spent a lot of time in these summer weeks thinking about, processing and praying about this whole scenario and how to make it more workable.

For example, it seems that I typically get a jump start on organizing and catching up after being away from home and away from our school schedule. It is amazing how manageable our home feels when we are not doing school and I am disciplined to do my chores each day and keep my children busy and productive. But as the year goes on, I let one thing go and then one more thing and pretty soon things are a shambles to me.

The bottom line is I have felt very defeated in this area. Knowing my tendencies to work hard and get caught up and then let it slide and repeating this cycle over and over and over is hard to stay positive and hopeful.

In talking about this one night with my Mom, we came up with a schedule for me once I got home for the first two weeks making one or two rooms or projects my focus for that day. That schedule has really helped me be purposeful in these first days at home and I've been through nearly the entire house except for my closet so far. It feels so good, I feel lighter, free-er and am so enjoying my home.

And, now my biggest goal and sometimes fear: maintain. To keep the motivation going and maintain all the work I've accomplished all while having other projects I need to get busy on.

In circumstances like this, it can be very easy to feel defeated and overwhelmed over the long haul. I know that I have felt very defeated in keeping up at home and managing well. I've been getting by and yes, I've been getting done what must be done - but it has been with difficulty, overwhelmed feelings and great struggle. The tidy-ness around me at this very moment is hope-infusing and lifts my heart. It is amazing how the outer surroundings can affect my heart and mind/attitude.

Through all of this, I started doing a word study on this idea of defeat and feeling defeated. It led to some interesting observations, thoughts and discoveries. Hope this will encourage you as it has me - and it will also serve as a reminder to me when needed.

First, I looked up verses using a concordance that included the word defeat or defeated. Here are a few favorites:

Leviticus 26:17, "I will set my face against you so that you will be defeated by your enemies; those who hate you will rule over you, and you will flee even when no one is pursuing you."

Numbers 14:41-43, "But Moses said, 'Why are you disobeying the Lord's command? This will not succeed! Do not go up, because the Lord is not with you. You will be defeated by your enemies, for the Amalekites and Canaanites will face you there. Because you have turned away from the Lord, he will not be with you and you will fall by the sword.'"

Deuteronomy 28:25, "The Lord will cause you to be defeated before your enemies. You will come at them from one direction but flee from them in seven, you will become a thing of horror to all the kingdoms on earth."

Some thoughts that emerged from reading this were:

* Defeat {as mentioned here} was a punishment for disobedience and defeat can also be given as a curse {see Deut. 28:15} but it struck me that when God was on their side, they were always winning.

* Defeat feels heavy, is wearying, brings me down, causes me to run and want to run.

* Reminds me of eternity. Satan will be defeated for eternity and Christ has overcome, do not walk in defeat here on Earth for it identifies me with the one who will be defeated and I am and will be identified with Christ.

* Think of the opposite of defeat, this is what I will share tomorrow.


Photos: Blueberry picking with sweet new friends this week!