February 7, 2019
Wisdom, Not Weakness
Did you get hit by the same bus I did, you know, that whirlwind of 5 weeks from Thanksgiving week through New Year’s Day? It seems like we packed 12 months of life and activities into those 5 weeks. Gifts were exchanged. Many traveled all over. Special celebrations were planned and enjoyed. Many stressors filled our days: hustle and bustle, shopping, returning, cheating on diets, breaking promises we made to others and ourselves. Well, the parties are over. Work and school are back underway and now we need to get through the dog days of winter. Maybe Congress will approve a holiday for us to get over the holidays! I guess that’s MLK and President’s Day!
The buzz of Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year are behind us. Catching up on bills, trying to lose the weight. Some of the sadness of leaving relatives, or hurts and psychological wounds we experienced or reopened over the holidays are oozing and now affecting our daily functioning. For many, this is when reality comes banging on the door. The issues and problems that we swept under the rug for the holiday season, maybe for many seasons, start gnawing at us once again. So listen up to an important point: this is the time for wisdom, not for weakness.
We all struggle with insecurity and feel incompetent in many areas of life. We all have trouble accepting the reality that we are powerless to live life successfully on our own. Today’s culture elevates personal independence to such a high degree that we’ve developed a bloated “I can do it myself” mentality. We think asking for help is a sign of weakness … even if the one we are asking is God! Problems are just going to worsen unless we admit the problem and execute a plan to get and apply help. Only 8% of New Years resolutions are successful one year later.
“I can deal with this situation myself … I don’t need anyone’s help. I don’t need to visit those porn sites … I can stop whenever I want to. I can stop eating those doughnuts and lose weight anytime I choose. I don’t need any help with my son … he’ll straighten up. I don’t want your charity … I am getting along just fine. I can control my temper myself … I don’t need a therapist for that. Alcohol just helps me relax, I’m not addicted. These pain killers are prescribed, so they are good for me.”
Sound familiar? Maybe you haven’t said those exact words, but you know your own excuses and rationalizations. Yours might be more subtle, higher end, or holier than thou compared to the ones I stated. But in the end, they are lame excuses that place yourself on the throne while pushing God off the throne of your heart.
It is OK to turn for help. In fact, according to the Bible, if we are wise, we will recognize our need for God’s help. And sometimes He sends that help through other people and actually through professional help or treatment options and facilities.
Unfortunately, in the behavioral health field there is no slow season. But the weeks between Halloween and the end of March are incredibly busy. This period, right after New Year’s Day, is when many make a courageous life-changing decision to go to residential addiction treatment, to marriage counseling, or to a support group. Every life-changing New Year’s resolution needs help to make it happen. So be wise, ask for help.
Today, if you are struggling with a life-interfering behavior, it’s time to ask God for help, because you can’t grind it on your own. Call our helpline 844-Life-Change (844-543-3242). We will help you put together a plan to find the best Christian treatment option to help you stop that behavior, manage your feelings, and transform your life! If you know someone who is struggling, call us. Or give our number or www.LighthouseNetwork.org to your loved one. Besides your prayers and friendship with them, this could be the most influential gift you can give. Remember, asking for God’s help is a sign of wisdom … not weakness. It will truly change your life. I know because it changed my life. And we get to help hundreds each month do the same! Whether you get help for your struggle and move forward or you rely on your own efforts and fail is your decision, so choose well.
Dear Father, I have always wanted to feel that on my own I could handle whatever life brings me. I recognize now what a mistake that has been and I ask for Your help with my struggle. Please help me grow courage to seek You out more often, patience to wait for Your answer to be made known to me, and an ear to hear Your answer when You send it. If the answer involves me going away to treatment, please humble me to accept this gracious and powerful gift. I pray in the name of the One who sees my weakness and who is my strength, Jesus Christ; and all God’s children say – AMEN!
A wise man will hear and increase in learning, and a man of understanding will acquire wise counsel. Proverbs 1:5
The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge; fools despise wisdom and instruction. Proverbs 1:7
The way of a fool is right in his own eyes, but a wise man is he who listens to counsel. Proverbs 12:15