Honestly, lately, I have been feeling a bit discouraged. I know the old adage that “when God closes a door, he opens a window,” but recently I have been feeling like it’s taking Him an awful long time to show me where that window is :)
I know there is a plan and a purpose for me, but sometimes it is really hard to see. I thought I would share a few things that have been encouraging to me. My hope is that it will encourage you also….
I am reading an excellent book entitled, The Mindful Way through Anxiety: Break Free from Chronic Worry and Reclaim Your Life. I HIGHLY recommend it for anyone who struggles with anxiety. It has been a great help, and I am enjoying learning to practice awareness and acceptance. In Chapter 10, the authors present an excellent analogy of how to deal with thoughts and feelings. They begin explaining this analogy by asking:
Who is driving your bus?
They go on to explain that often we let our feelings “drive our bus” instead of letting our values and what we know to be important control our actions. They explain that we can visualize ourselves in the driver’s seat, guiding our bus in the direction we want it to go, regardless of how loud our feelings (the passengers) are shouting. They explain that we should not try to ignore our feelings, but rather accept them. We may be feeling sad or anxious, but we can still choose to act in ways that get us where we want to go. It is important to give ourselves grace in the times when we allow our feelings to drive for a short time.
I have found it important to understand where my feelings are coming from, and what they maybe trying to tell me; however, that does not mean I need to let them dictate my actions. This has been a powerful analogy for me, and seem to keep asking myself, “Who is driving my bus today?” Am I avoiding something out of fear? Am I doing something just so I will feel good about myself? Or, am I making decisions based on who God says I am and who He has called me to be?
I may not know the specific vocational step God is calling me to take, but I do know that He calls me to be faithful with everyday He gives me. For me, at this point, that means being diligent in taking care of the tasks in front of me (schoolwork and household management) and to research and pray about my next career move.
Also here are a few bible verses and quotes I have found helpful:
“Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us, fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith….”
“Nothing in this world can take the place of persistence. Talent will not; nothing is more common than unsuccessful people with talent. Genius will not; unrewarded genius is almost a proverb. Education will not; the world is full of educated derelicts. Persistence and determination alone are omnipotent. The slogan “press on” has solved and always will solve the problems of the human race”
“Success is not final, failure is not fatal: it is the courage to continue that counts.”
“Little by little one walks far”