OVERWHELMED

What overwhelms us, bringing our heart rates up and our heads bowed low?  What is so challenging in our lives at this moment that causes us to consider giving up, running away or striking out at anyone who gets in our way of being overwhelmed?  What is happening in us when we are overwhelmed?

There is a natural, functional good stress that occurs in forced change or transition in the way we do life that can promote creativity.  Innovation comes from finding out a way to do something better when the old way falls apart or no longer functions.  “Necessity is the mother of invention”.  We are finding that out in the middle of a pandemic!  Many people are coming together to find an antidote for this virus.  But what about the pandemic of turning from God?  This brings on an overwhelming state of mind that can only be cured by being overwhelmed with God!

Bad stress is letting life overpower and overwhelm us.  Our enemy loves using this kind of stress to bring us down.  In the middle of transition, we are always challenged until we can internalize and accommodate change.  Sometimes we get stuck in neutral.  We don’t know how to proceed because this is uncharted territory for us.  If others are highly dependent on us to “fix” the problem and press us for answers, our blood pressure begins to rise.  Frustration sets in when we can’t see the light at the end of the tunnel.  We blame our lack of ability and knowledge.  Then we blame others while they blame us.  Gossip rears its ugly head and adds to the frustration that births anger and resentment, bitterness and division among family, friends and coworkers.

David is once more overwhelmed with be the enemy of being overwhelmed.  His current situation sends him running to God for help. Who do we run to for our rescue?  Who pulls us up and out of the quicksand of doubts, fears, anger, bitterness, and frustration? 

Are we going down for the last time or rising up with God as our Rescue, God of all Hope, the God who saves us?  Be overwhelmed by God!

Worship and Wisdom, Psalms and Proverbs

Psalm 69, The Message

A David Psalm

God, God, save me!
I’m in over my head,

Quicksand under me, swamp water over me;
I’m going down for the third time.

I’m hoarse from calling for help,
Bleary-eyed from searching the sky for God.

I’ve got more enemies than hairs on my head;
Sneaks and liars are out to knife me in the back.

What I never stole
Must I now give back?

God, you know every sin I’ve committed;
My life’s a wide-open book before you.

Don’t let those who look to you in hope
Be discouraged by what happens to me,
Dear Lord! God of the armies!

Don’t let those out looking for you
Come to a dead end by following me—
Please, dear God of Israel!

Because of you I look like an idiot,
I walk around ashamed to show my face.

My brothers shun me like a bum off the street;
My family treats me like an unwanted guest.

I love you more than I can say.
Because I’m madly in love with you,
They blame me for everything they dislike about you.

10 When I poured myself out in prayer and fasting,
All it got me was more contempt.

11 When I put on a sad face,
They treated me like a clown.

12 Now drunks and gluttons
Make up drinking songs about me.

13 And me? I pray.
God, it’s time for a break!

God, answer in love!
Answer with your sure salvation!

14 Rescue me from the swamp,
Don’t let me go under for good,

Pull me out of the clutch of the enemy;
This whirlpool is sucking me down.

15 Don’t let the swamp be my grave, the Black Hole
Swallow me, its jaws clenched around me.

16 Now answer me, God, because you love me;
Let me see your great mercy full-face.

17 Don’t look the other way; your servant can’t take it.
I’m in trouble. Answer right now!

18 Come close, God; get me out of here.
Rescue me from this deathtrap.

19 You know how they kick me around—
Pin on me the donkey’s ears, the dunce’s cap.

20 I’m broken by their taunts,
Flat on my face, reduced to a nothing.

I looked in vain for one friendly face. Not one.
I couldn’t find one shoulder to cry on.

21 They put poison in my soup,
Vinegar in my drink.

22 Let their supper be bait in a trap that snaps shut;
May their best friends be trappers who’ll skin them alive.

23 Make them become blind as bats,
Give them the shakes from morning to night.

24 Let them know what you think of them,
Blast them with your red-hot anger.

25 Burn down their houses,
Leave them desolate with nobody at home.

26 They gossiped about the one you disciplined,
Made up stories about anyone wounded by God.

27 Pile on the guilt,
Don’t let them off the hook.

28 Strike their names from the list of the living;
No rock-carved honor for them among the righteous.

29 I’m hurt and in pain;
Give me space for healing, and mountain air.

30 Let me shout God’s name with a praising song,
Let me tell his greatness in a prayer of thanks.

31 For God, this is better than oxen on the altar,
Far better than blue-ribbon bulls.

32 The poor in spirit see and are glad—
Oh, you God-seekers, take heart!

33 For God listens to the poor,
He doesn’t walk out on the wretched.

34 You heavens, praise him; praise him, earth;
Also ocean and all things that swim in it.

35 For God is out to help Zion,
Rebuilding the wrecked towns of Judah.

Guess who will live there—
The proud owners of the land?

36 No, the children of his servants will get it,
The lovers of his name will live in it.

TRUTH: Be overwhelmed with God’s care, protection, love, provision, mercy and grace.  He is our only Hope.  He is Life.

And we’re singing…”Overwhelmed” by Big Daddy Weave

I see the work of Your Hands
Galaxies spin in a Heavenly dance oh God
All that You are is so overwhelming

I hear the sound of Your Voice
All at once it’s a gentle and thundering noise oh God
All that You are is so overwhelming

I delight myself in You
Captivated by Your beauty
I’m overwhelmed, I’m overwhelmed by You

God, I run into Your arms
Unashamed because of mercy
I’m overwhelmed, I’m overwhelmed by You

I know the power of Your Cross
Forgiven and free forever You’ll be my God

All that You’ve done is so overwhelming
I delight myself in You
In the Glory of Your Presence
I’m overwhelmed, I’m overwhelmed by You…

Proverb 22:1-2, The Message

A sterling reputation is better than striking it rich;
    a gracious spirit is better than money in the bank.

The rich and the poor shake hands as equals—
    God made them both!

WISDOM:  Our first thought should be love.  Love God.  Love Others.  God created all of us and loves all of his creation.  Be overwhelmed by God’s love!

Abba Father,

I am overwhelmed by who you are to us and what you have provided for us.  You give Life eternal.  You are Hope.  You are Provider, Healer, Sustainer, Protector, the One we run to when overwhelmed by the enemy of this world.  We grip your hand and rise up with You over and over when transitions and seasons of life seem overwhelming to us.  I am truly captivated by your love most of all.  Who am I that you would give your One and Only in exchange for my sin so I can be free forever?  Overwhelming indeed!  Thank you, thank you, thank you.

In Jesus Name, Amen

About randscallawayffm

Randy and Susan co founded Finding Focus Ministries in 2006. Their goal as former full time pastors, is to serve and provide spiritual encouragement and focus to those on the "front lines" of ministry. Extensive experience being on both sides of ministry, paid and volunteer, on the mission fields of other countries as well as the United States, helps them bring a different perspective to those who need it most. Need a lift? Call us 260 229 2276.
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