People in crisis contact me regularly. Circumstances vary, of course, but the crises fall into categories: illness—their own or a loved one’s, marriage issues, parenting challenges, a breakdown in family relationships, financial fears, losses from a natural disaster, and more.
Crisis changes our lives in a nanosecond. It disrupts routine, ruins our appetite, robs us of sleep, and removes our capability to think straight. We might forget appointments we’ve made or struggle to recall what day of the week it is.
Anyone in crisis can empathize with the psalmist who described his soul as downcast and disturbed. We’ve all been in that place. Thankfully, we don’t have to stay there. Like the psalmist, we can find hope in crisis through the words he spoke over himself: “Put your hope in God for I will yet praise him, my Savior and my God” (Psalm 42:11 NIV).
The psalmist reminds us that the key to finding hope in crisis doesn’t lie in our circumstances changing for the better. If that were true, then we’d lose hope completely if our situation worsened.
We find hope in crisis when we place our confidence in our unchanging God. Choosing to trust His wisdom, sovereignty, power, and goodness soothes the soul that is downcast and disturbed.
From personal experience, I’ve discovered a few practical actions I can take to instill hope in crisis. Here are five ways you can do the same.
Ask for Help
Our human bent tells us that no one cares or wants to get involved. In reality, others might not be aware of the depth of our pain. Even if they are, they might feel helpless to do anything about it. No one should have to face crisis alone. Let’s be okay with asking others to pray and to help in practical ways.
Remember the Truth
Our minds tend to focus on what-ifs and fears. Counteract that tendency by focusing on God’s promises instead. Here’s a good one: “You will keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on You, because he trusts in You” (Isaiah 26:3 NKJV). Write this on a recipe card and post it where you’ll see it often. Better yet, memorize it so you can recall it even in the night when it’s difficult to sleep.
Engage in Worship
Fill your mind and your home with praise and worship music. Listen—really listen—to the lyrics and the truths they contain. What do they say about who God is? How does that apply to your situation? Let those lyrics wash away doubts and fears.
Take a Walk
Exercise is a good remedy for stress. It increases blood flow, supplies the body with fresh oxygen, and stimulates positive hormones. Coupling it with prayer or listening to worship music refreshes us in every way—mentally, emotionally, physically, and spiritually.
1 Thessalonians 5:18 tells us to “give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.” God issues this command because He created us and knows that expressing gratitude releases hormones associated with pleasure and contentment. The darker our circumstances, then, the more vital it is that we give thanks. This doesn’t mean giving thanks for whatever constitutes our crisis. It means we give thanks to God for being with us in the middle of it, for being our source of wisdom and strength, and for promising to use it for our good and His glory.
Sooner or later, everyone lands in crisis. Some folks come unraveled. Others find hope. Where we place our hope and how we choose to respond makes all the difference.
Pause for a few moments to listen to this song. Let it fill your heart with fresh hope today.
#hope #findinghopeincrisis #givethanks #fightstress #bgbg2
Buy a copy of Finding Hope in Crisis: Devotions for Calm in Chaos for yourself or for a friend today.