Finding Clarity When Life Gets Complicated
Have you ever felt like this was the most accurate answer to questions people ask you?
- How’s work going? “It’s complicated.”
- How’s school? “It’s complicated.”
- How about your New Year’s resolutions? “It’s complicated.”
- Your diet? “It’s complicated.”
- Your wife? “It’s complicated.”
There’s even a place on social media websites under “relationship status” that gives you the option to answer, “It’s complicated.”
Life can be complicated, but God can bring clarity.
Paul found himself in quite a war of social and theological ideals and opinions. He had once arrested and killed Christians; now he was one – a very vocal one, whose testimony and ministry brought division everywhere he went.
At one point Paul was arrested and very shrewdly turned his enemies against one another, causing them to fight among themselves, nearly killing him in the process.
“And when the dissension became violent, the tribune, afraid that Paul would be torn to pieces by them, commanded the soldiers to go down and take him away from among them by force and bring him into the barracks. The following night the Lord stood by him and said, “Take courage, for as you have testified to the facts about me in Jerusalem, so you must testify also in Rome.””Acts 23:10-11 ESV
In the midst of the chaos and confusion God spoke. His words comforted Paul, gave him courage, and assured him of promises on which he could depend.
Here are three things that seem to complicate my life:
- Isolation. I tend to process my thoughts and problems inwardly and privately. Sometimes that’s ok, but often the answers I seek are found in the fellowship, friendship, and wisdom of those around me. Remember God’s words about Adam – “It is not good for man to be alone; let us make a helper for him.” The effectiveness of isolation pales in comparison to the rewards of relationships.
- Overworking and underplaying. Burying myself in my work may give me a temporary sense of accomplishment, but it slowly eats away at the foundations of my relationships with others. Ebenezer Scrooge had a lot of money, but he wasn’t successful until he learned the value of the people around him and enjoyed time with them.
- Not exercising regularly. I cannot ignore the physical component of my life and expect my soul and spirit to compensate. God made me spirit, soul, and body. I must steward and be attentive to my whole being. They are interwoven. Physical health affects mental and emotional health.
Here are three things that bring clarity to my life:
- Prayer. Honest, out-loud, passionate, and routine times of praying to God allows me to not only cast my cares on Him, but hear His voice.
- Worship. When life gets complicated satan tries to silence my song. My worship cannot be determined by my circumstances! My praise breaks the barrier between earth and heaven, ushering me into the powerful presence of God!
- The Word. When I come to the Scriptures I am not merely encountering words, but having an encounter with the Word Himself. Jesus speaks to me, giving me wisdom and infusing me with faith by the ministry of the Holy Spirit.
I’m not sure that complications in life can be avoided. But clarity can be found. They key is to minimize the self-induced complications and maximize the Spirit-led practices that bring clarity to the chaos.
God will lead you through this.