This has been one of the worst winters I have ever experienced since moving to the Poconos. The icy road conditions made it near impossible to travel safe. On one particular morning heading to work, our car slid into an embankment and our tires got stuck in the snow drift. My husband, who was driving, grew frustrated because he knew we had some place we had to be.
While sitting there smelling the burning rubber of my car tires as my husband tried to get us out, I thought about the feelings we all experience when we’re “stuck.” I noticed a few things about being in a place of “stuckness.” The first is- if you are stuck, no matter how much time you spend doing the same thing, the results will not change. The second is- when you are stuck- anger, frustration and self-pity will never release you. The third is- when you are stuck, you must never ignore or take for granted the help that God sends your way. And finally- when you are stuck, getting loose and being freed are two totally different things. Let’s Talk about it.
Doing the Same Thing
It is an obvious yet hard to grasp notion that the same actions yield the same results but it is always true. Einstein says that doing the same things yet expecting a different result is the definition of insanity! It amazes me how many of us, when we are emotionally, mentally and spiritually “stuck” hold on to our own, broken ways. When you are stuck the opportunity to get loose exist in your willingness to do something different. For my husband on that cold winter morning, it meant trusting me with the wheel and getting a shovel to work together. It took a while but it did finally sink in that hitting the gas over and over and revving the engine hard was not only not getting us out of the embankment but was actually digging us in deeper. This is true in all areas of stuckness. If your relationships are broken and you are stuck in un-forgiveness, it is time for you to forgive. This holds true for every other area in your life that you are stuck in as well. When you find yourself stuck, ask yourself the important question “What can I do different?” I am willing to bet that the answer to that question might require you to turn the wheel over to God and trust him to lead the way much like the trust my husband had to place in me. Remember that the same actions will yield the same results but moving in God’s will is freeing!
Anger, Frustration and Self-Pity
It is completely natural to show a range of emotions when you find yourself “stuck” in a situation. For some, the natural choice may be to cry. For another it may be to give-up, whereas anger may be the emotion of choice for someone else. Although it is natural to feel, succumbing to emotions are useless when trying to break free from being stuck. When we are unable to move- whether it’s moving on after a divorce, death or break-up or literally physically and mentally unable to do what needs to be done- we are experiencing a spiritual binding from the Enemy who hopes it will keep us right where we are. The problem with stagnation, whether emotional, physical or spiritual is not that we are not moving, it’s that we are lacking faith and trust in God. By creating an emotional block we legitimize our stagnation and live in self-pity. Let’s rebuke this trick of the Enemy and make a conscious effort today to experience our emotions when we feel them and then immediately surrender all useless energy to God. In our place of surrender we allow the presence of God to dwell in our hearts and in our situation. Gain perspective in crisis and do the unthinkable by developing a cheerful heart. By simply changing your countenance, you are declaring to the Enemy that you belong to an awesome God who is worthy of your smiles and praise even in the face of adversity!
Acknowledge God's Help
There is perhaps nothing more frustrating to witness than someone who knows the name Jesus Christ live their life defeated. I can tell you it is like nails across a chalkboard every time I hear a Christian claim depression, claim poverty, claim illness, claim loneliness, accept relationships as irreconcilable, or speak negativity over there present crisis. Jesus tells us in Scripture that these types of worries are as pagans do. Pagans were those who have either never heard the name of Jesus or not accepted the name of Jesus. Many times we pray to get out of a binding situation but when we don’t receive the answer we want, we simply turn God’s help away. This is a critical mistake and needs to be acknowledged to be corrected. In my walk I have seen people pray for a job just to release it because they were afraid to lose their food stamp benefits, I have seen people pray for reconciliation but refuse to forgive and know peace, I have even thought myself the answer to prayers shared with me and developed a ministry team just to watch it dissipate within one year. There are many times when God places right before us the very answer to our prayers and we are too wrapped up in our own wants that if God’s response does not reveal immediate gratification, we tap out!
When we got stuck that morning, our female neighbor came out and asked if she could help us. I was joyfully surprised to witness my husband reject his male pride and accept her assistance. Although her aide did free us from the drift we were in, it did something much greater that we both would have missed with the words, “No thank you, I’ve got it.” It bonded us closer as neighbors and provided an opportunity for deeper fellowship and relationship in the future. No sooner than we were pulling off (about an hour later) my husband and I agreed that it was long overdue to invite our neighbors over for dinner. By accepting God’s assistance we received far more than assistance, we gained the possibility of developing a lifelong friendship.
A funny thing happened when we got out of the snow drift. My husband went to help my neighbor shovel while I sat in the middle of the road. A car approached making it necessary for me to move over and just like that, ice caught my back tire and back in a drift I went again! I’m laughing as I share this because something amazing happened. I discovered there is a huge difference between getting loosed and being freed. By the second time around, we had developed a faithful system. We learned our aggravation would be brief so we skipped straight to laughter, we learned our old method didn’t work so we prayed and did what worked and within minutes, we were back on the road. This is an important lesson for when we find ourselves stuck in life. The drifts in life will always exist but glory to serving a God who is with us in the midst of it! God is not interested in getting us temporarily loosened. He is our hope of living permanently freed! God has an established plan for your life and in those plans you will inevitably face times when you feel stuck. I’m here to share with you that in knowing the name Jesus Christ you also know a peace, love, joy, patience and hope that is eternally unbinding. In the event you are feeling stuck in any area of your life consider doing things differently by releasing useless emotions, accepting God’s help and glorifying His presence in the midst and watch your situation supernaturally transform before you.
I hope this message has been a blessing to you,
In His love-
Evangelist Nidicka Frederick.