Where do you get your emotional strength for everyday living?
"The Sovereign Lord is my strength; he makes my feet like the feet of a deer, he enables me to tread on the heights." Habakkuk 3:19 NIV
Having been a pastor for many years, it was not uncommon for me to hear words like, “I just don’t have it within me…I’m not going to make it…I am running on empty…I am emotionally drained…” I knew what the focus of our conversation would be. They needed to identify where they were presently getting their emotional strength. In addition, they needed to know how to build up their emotional strength.
Emotional strength comes from thinking right and being unafraid to make mistakes. When you have emotional strength, you can face change rather than avoid it and are not concerned by what people think. When you don’t have emotional strength, your physical strength begins to decrease. Understand that your emotional strength is tested when you face intense emotional experiences. It is expressed through your courage, enthusiasm, confidence, and emotional control.
Where do you get your emotional strength? There are many sources. Some people find it from within themselves. Others build it up through close relationships. Still, others remember the good deeds they have done, practice forgiving themselves, express gratitude, and of course, take care of themselves by practicing healthy physical habits. Some people rightfully rely on medication as prescribed by doctors. Still, others buy their own stimulants to keep it together.
The question is, “How is this working for you?” Are you able to rise to life’s challenges every day? You need to be emotionally and mentally strong so that you will be able to face whatever life throws at you, whether it be the good, the bad, or the ugly.
Today’s Bible focus provides the best answer for GETTING EMOTIONAL STRENGTH. Habakkuk 3:19 is the last verse of this short 3-chapter book. Just like you, the prophet, Habakkuk, wrestled with the question of why God allowed such wicked crimes by men and nations to go unchecked. Asking “Why?” questions infers facing challenging problems which can emotionally drain you. Why do wicked people get away with doing wicked things? Why are these disasters happening to good people? By faith, Habakkuk received from God emotional stability to “feel so sure of God, that, no matter how dark the day, there is no doubt as to the outcome. For God’s people there is a glorious future.” [Halley’s Bible Handbook-Habakkuk] The prophet was both a realist and an optimist. He faced the issues with divine strength. That, my friend, is a wonderful picture of GETTING EMOTIONAL STRENGTH.
Get your emotional strength from God. Let Him be your primary source. Ask and trust God for divine emotional strength. After having a heart-to-heart talk with God over heart-wrenching issues, Habakkuk testified to God being his number one personal source of emotional strength. God did 2 things for the prophet. And by the way, God will do the same for you. Let me identify them:
- God will give you feet to run like a deer. Habakkuk declared “…he makes my feet like the feet of a deer…” A white-tailed deer can run up to 35 miles per hour. It cannot maintain that speed, but it certainly can quickly get out of harm’s way.
- God will give you feet and legs to leap like a deer. Habakkuk declared “…he enables me to tread on the heights.” Whether it be a high obstacle, fence, hole, or cavity, a deer is capable of making a great jump. From a standing position, it can clear 7 feet and up to 10 feet when running. In a single leap, a deer can cover as much as 30 feet. A deer knows how to hurdle problems and obstacles.
Run like a deer. Ask God to give you His strength. David testified, “For by You I can run against a troop…” [Psalm 18:29a] God’s emotional strength feeds your physical strength so that you to run like a deer through the problem or around it.
Leap like a deer. Make God your #1 source of strength. David said, “By my God, I can leap over a wall.” [Psalm 18:29b] God will prove Himself to be the emotional strength you need as you trust Him to get you over the mountain.
SOMETHING TO DO
Be greatly blessed when you read Psalm 18 and Psalm 121.
SOUL TIME PRAYER
Thank you, Heavenly Father, for giving to me the emotional strength I need to face all the issues life brings. I place my faith in You for the courage and stability I need. AMEN!