4 Practices When Things Look Hopeless
One, in particular, is Gandalf and Frodo in the Mines of Moria. See it in this clip here.
Don’t Give In To Hopelessness
Here Frodo is sitting with the wise old Gandalf expressing his anxiety over the heavy burden of “The Ring”. He was wishing it would never have happened, life would be much easier to go back to living in the Shire.
But Gandalf as the sage that he is, recognizes the teaching moment. Gandalf tells Frodo, It’s not the trial we are in we need to focus on here Frodo, but what you do with the time that matters.
As I think about the hopeless feelings, difficulties, problems or as they say in Texas-opportunities, that I am currently under I have to evaluate what I am doing with that time.
Am I learning anything or am I wrestling with the trial demanding my own way? Am I still living with integrity, doing what is right, sticking to Godly values or am I being stubborn and unwilling to change?
Life would be much easier to ignore the “opportunities” and go back to living in the “Shire” wouldn’t it? But then I wouldn’t be learning or developing a better character. That is the wrestling. Do I want to change or stay the same?
So here are FOUR THINGS to help get through those hopeless feelings:
1) Like the Lord of the Rings, Frodo had friends. When he didn’t have the entire Fellowship, he had Sam. There are friends that can help you through your trial. A trusted friend, a wise old sage, wife, best friends and with all the social media, you can connect with friends or people that are going through trials of their own. Find a friend or groups of friends that you can trust to help you on your journey.
2) Make a Journal. Yeah, it’s tough for a guy to journal, especially if it deals with feelings. I find it hard to journal, but I’ve also found that when I journal, I find more clarity. When I do get my thoughts or feelings down, there is something about how your soul and mind connect with the pen and paper that gives you some release or satisfaction. Also, when you look back and read what you’ve written months or years ago, you can be encouraged by your progress.
3) Prayer. There is nothing like submitting to God and being able to pour out your thoughts, feelings and frustrations to a God that care and loves you like no one else. This one thing actually makes you more of a man than anything else. When you admit to God that you are powerless and give over your life, problems and situations to Him, that is when real change occurs. God then comes in, wraps His arms around you like a blanket and guides you through everything. That’s when you become a real man.
Without this one thing, Prayer, I could not be where I am today. Am I perfect now than 20 years ago? Hardly and far from it. I am a much, much different man than before. I believe I am a better man, but I could not have gone through and go through my current “opportunities” without his guidance and peace that only He can provide.
4) Keeping Hope and a positive attitude. In Lord of the Rings, hopeless feelings were something that felt like it was continually dwindling, but there was always one or two characters who fought and held out for Hope.
The Bible in Proverbs 17:22 says: “A joyful heart is a good medicine. But a broken spirit dries up the bones.”
What I have found that with little hope or confidence of anything working out, it usually doesn’t! When I do have a positive, hopeful outlook, not looking at the situation, but looking forward, no matter how hard it may be at times, forward to the hope that I have of what it will look like when I am through the valley, things start to happen for the good.
When you have a positive attitude, more people want to be around you to have what you have. No one wants to be around a hopeless person, I know! I’ve chased away many of them!
Fight for Hope. Fight to be Joyful. It all comes down to making a choice and making your mind to be hopeful and joyful.
I continually have to remind myself of these things, which is why I am writing them down, so I remember them. I continually have to force my mind to do these things.
One last thing: Jesus left us His word and in particular these words from John 16:33-“I have told you these things, so that in ME you may have peace. In this world, you will have trouble. BUT take heart! I have overcome the world.”
Take heart guys and use the time wisely that He has given us!
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Originally published at www.stevewiersum.com on December 7, 2016.