There is no question that life can be a lot to handle.
Whether it’s because you’re PCSing soon, you’re family is broken up, or things at school are just crazy, at some point you are going to feel overwhelmed by the task of just living life. It can be incredibly difficult!!
Where do you think God fits in all of this? I mean, what does he expect us to do when life looms in front of us like a tsunami wave about to crash over us? If you’ve wondered this or something similar, keep reading to find out more.
Once my friend Devin went to the school nurse. He told her, “I have a really hard time concentrating, and I am getting bad grades in school because of it. What should I do?” She ran through a few questions and then asked, “What’s your sleep schedule like?”
Devin told her how he went to bed anywhere between 11pm and 1am. He had to be up by 6:15 on school days but he slept in late on Saturday and until 9 on Sunday. After hearing that the nurse said, “Go home and pick times to go to sleep and wake up that will work for every day of the week (or as close as possible.) Try this for two weeks and make sure that you have a routine at night so your body knows it’s time to rest. If that doesn’t fix it, come back and see me.”
Devin was skeptical that it would be as simple as that and he really didn’t want to get up at 6 on a Saturday, but he tried it for 2 weeks and things did go better. He found out he could do some of the things he liked to do at night, like play video games or use the home gym, with less interruptions early in the morning when the house was still quiet. Concentrating in school seemed easier too and he decided he’d stick it out until finals since it seemed to be working.
A few days later, though, Devin couldn’t sleep. He was so angry with his dad. There had been this huge blowup over his C in Biology and Devin was shaking with anger by the time it was over. The next day it didn’t get any better when his dad took the Xbox controllers and said he’d get them back when he had a B or better.
When Devin saw his youth leader at the school during lunch, he talked to him about what had been going on with his grades, the sleep schedule, and his Dad. His youth leader asked him how he had addressed his anger. Devin just shrugged since he’d just been ignoring it and waiting it out.
“After school, let’s go frolfing by the golf course with the rest of the guys from small group. Maybe we can work out some of that aggression! Right now, though, can I pray with you? We should probably bring the ‘Big Guy’ in on this.”
Praying in the middle of a hallway felt a little awkward but Devin went with it and he did feel better afterwards. When they went out that afternoon, he had a good time tossing the Frisbee around and hanging out with the guys.
He was feeling better when he got home and got to sleep around his target time. The next few weeks were a lot of work but Devin kept pushing forward and working hard. He stuck to his sleep schedule and stayed connected to his friend. One of his older buddies suggested they do some studying together (Bible and school) and that really helped Devin stay on track. Things weren’t always easy or even good, but having balance in his life made all the difference when things got overwhelming.
What you might have noticed is how one area of Devin’s life had the ability to influence (for good or bad) the other areas of his life. We are all made up of different aspects of our being. One breakdown, conceptualized by Dr. David O. Sanders, is known as S.P.I.E.S. It stands for Spiritual, Physical, Intellectual, Emotional, and Social. It represents the five areas of our lives as humans (A word for this is ‘holistic’—representing who we are as a whole person).
Having this breakdown can be really helpful when working to bring balance to your overwhelming life. When you have healthy growth in each area of life, you will find it more and more effortless to handle whatever life might throw at you. A holistic approach will definitely provide balance to your life!
This Scripture outlines the way our lives will ebb and flow and that we will experience growth and atrophy or even regression in the different areas of S.P.I.E.S. Notice how each part of who we are is represented here. Also pay attention to the ending and look for guidance pertaining to finding daily our balance in this overwhelming life.
Scripture: Ecclesiastes 3:1–15
- Have you ever experienced anything like Devin? What did you use to help bring balance to your life?
- Do you believe that having balance is important and will improve your ability to handle life? Why or why not?
- What areas of S.P.I.E.S. do you think you do a good job growing in? Which areas do you tend to neglect?
Continue interacting with this topic here.
Dear Jesus, everything can feel out of whack so easily. Why is it that simple to make me feel lost and overwhelmed? Please give me strength and guidance, Father. I need to learn how to handle this life and not be brought down or defeated. Help me make wise choices and learn to bring balance to my life. Give me awareness of myself and my needs; help me figure out what having balance means. I believe I can do it with your help. Amen.