Winter can be harsh, especially when it gets frigid, frosty, and downright freezing. Metaphorically, Winter seems to represent difficulties, hardships, and desperation. Winter may arrive when you got laid off from your job, your marriage is crumbling apart, or someone close to you had just passed on. Such situations will test the mental and spiritual resolves that require a lot out of you to pull through it.
Instead of becoming bitter, you CAN get better.
Here are four suggestions on how you can stay W.A.R.M. during the wintry season of your life:
W: WALKTHROUGH, NOT INTO
One of the worst things to happen in our lives is letting bad experiences negate us permanently. King David of Israel wrote in his “blog” that he “walked through the valley of the shadow of death.” It is important to note that he did not walk INTO and become fused with his struggles. He did not apply for permanent residency in the valley but kept walking through it. Seasons come and go, and Spring is always waiting around the corner. Keep moving forward, and you will eventually meet it. And, by the way, movement keeps you warm too.
“If you’re going through hell, keep going.” — Sir Winston Churchill
A: ACKNOWLEDGE THE SITUATION BUT LIVE THE SOLUTION
Denial only serves to protract the season of pain. What is ignored does not necessarily go away. On the other hand, accepting reality helps you cognitively and spiritually find ways to adapt and regain control. Healthy adaptations often involve changing your perception and finding solutions. Turn your focus on those solutions and live it.
“It is not the strongest or the most intelligent who will survive but those who can best manage change.” ― Leon C. Megginson
R: REACH OUT FOR SUPPORT
Social isolation makes people cold, literally. Emotional challenges can seem insurmountable when you are dealing with it alone. With a support system in place, it not only helps you cope better; it also emits the warmest of feelings when friends and family come to rally around you during your darkest (or coldest) moment. Don’t be ashamed to reach out for help. Isolation can lead to desolation.
“We don’t heal in isolation, but in community.” ― S. Kelley Harrell
M: MUSTER ALL YOU GOT
Don’t give up the fight yet. Using fishermen analogy, Peter taught us to CAST all our anxieties. It means mustering all your strength to throw out your worries just as the fishermen would do with their nets. Holding on to their nets will not yield any harvest. Similarly, holding on to your bitterness will not help in the healing process. It requires courage, strength, and belief to do so. Mustering is a form of exercise. It helps build physical, emotional, and spiritual muscles. By the way, exercising keeps you warm too.
“Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you” 1 Peter 5:7.
Winter may be here for some of you, but remember, it will soon pass. After Winter, gorgeous Spring will show up, for sure, and the sun will shine once again. Hang in there and stay W.A.R.M. in the meanwhile.
“What the caterpillar calls the end of the world, the master calls a butterfly.” – Richard Bach
“Do not grieve, for the joy of the Lord is your strength.” Nehemiah 8:10