Tag Archives: Emotional Health

when crisis mode meets blame culture: how to regain your peace

It’s the year 2020 and what began as a rosy glow of hope, and expectation, has left a lot of people….well, feeling powerless and fearful. A peek at the news? Bad, Bad. All bad. Is anything good happening in the world?!

A minute on social media? Fear! Control! “Friends” have turned to bullying, and shaming, those who may view things differently than they do. Blame has seemingly become the culture, now!

WHY?! Why are people using social media as a platform to boss everyone around? One simple word: FEAR. Ever known a “control freak”? Well, those people are literally the. most. afraid. They also may feel the most helpless.

Control makes fearful people feel powerful!

What is it about a crisis that causes the finger of blame to be pointed? Perhaps it is the fearful person’s default when they don’t get their way. Perhaps it is just simply easier to blame others’ behavior rather than take responsibility for their own feelings of helplessness.

After all, if YOU would do this (or that) then maybe we wouldn’t be in this mess, right? Not exactly.

In the end, the responsibility for yourself, and your family lies squarely on your shoulders…and that goes for each of us.

Check out the following 4 TRUTHS ABOUT PLAYING THE BLAME GAME:

1) Blaming Others Causes a Loss of Personal Power. Remember how Adam blamed Eve (and even GOD for giving him Eve) when God confronted him for eating the forbidden fruit? (see Genesis 3)? In that moment, Adam chose to engage in the blame game rather than be honest. You see, pointing a finger of blame towards others is an act of dishonesty which leads to a loss of personal power. In effect, Adam was saying “If you hadn’t given me this woman, maybe THIS wouldn’t have happened, GOD!” Once you give away your personal power, helplessness (and resentment) is sure to follow.

2) Blaming Others Provides a False Sense of Security. Sadly, the belief that we are better than others – or at least, always KNOW better – is strangely calming for some. After all, if I am above others, then I must be getting ahead in life. I must be better. I must be safer. I will end up above while all of you are below. Right? Wrong. Not only does this attitude give no room for one to be wrong, at times, but superiority is never pretty. In time, this false sense of security will shatter and reality will set in. At some point, you will realize that your security must be in something (Someone) that is bigger, wiser, and stronger than you are.

REMINDER: Those who live on a high horse have much further to fall than the rest of us.

3) Blaming Others Is a Waste of Time and Energy. In the moment, telling others they are “part of the problem” or “not taking things seriously’, etc. may feel like you are accomplishing something positive. However, this type of behavior will leave you feeling depleted and steal your peace. Your time and energy would be better spent looking within, addressing WHY you feel the need to go around pointing a finger of blame.

4) Blaming Others Does Nothing to Redeem the Situation. There are absolutely times in life where we had nothing to do with the injustice that has befallen us. There are times when we are innocent victims. In those times, God will guide and heal us. …And bring justice on our behalf. He may even use us to speak out against corruption, abuse, etc. There are abusive situations that MUST BE addressed!

However, that is not what I am discussing here. What I am addressing here, are times where there is room for other viewpoints. There are times when questioning should be allowed, and encouraged. During these times we can be the ones to help redeem a difficult situation. We may not be able to “fix” everything, but within our own homes, and spheres, God desires us to be a part of the solutions rather than placing blame and shame on others. Helping to redeem a tough situation will help to also take back your personal power. You are not helpless! GOD made you to be an over comer and to encourage others to overcome as well!

Switching Gears

Whether you are prone to pointing fingers – allowing your fears to push you into control mode – OR you’ve been on the receiving end of someone like the aforementioned, what’s the remedy? How can we get back into a state of peace? Check out the do-able peace regaining ideas below:

1) Remember That There is Only One Who is Ultimately in Control. Regardless of the type of crisis-mode you may find yourself in (physical, mental spiritual, financial, etc)…regardless of the scale of the crisis you may find yourself in (personal or world-wide) there is only ONE who is completely in control…..and it ain’t YOU! It is YHWH, Creator GOD, your Heavenly Father who loves you and has good plans for you! Stop micro-managing the rest of the world. Instead of blaming others, run to GOD. Receive His peace. He is waiting for you with arms open wide.

2) Be Humble. Yes, I know that you have the “special insight”…the “special wisdom” that the rest of us need. It’s just too bad that we can’t all be like you *eyeroll. Well, even if that is true – be humble. Your patience with others will go much further than your expectations on others to see things your way. Besides, you might be “wrong”. Be patient, and kind, to yourself as well. Crisis-Mode takes a lot out of a person…so take it easy as much as possible.

Please, before you post or say something, ask yourself: Am I moving in the spirit of fear or faith? Am I trying to control, or encourage others? Am I revealing truth or spreading shame?

3) Find Out What God Is Saying. This is something that I go back to often because when you seek GOD for His heart, on a matter, then you begin to see things the way He sees them. You begin to see and love people (and yourself) the way that He does. This concept can be applied to situations in life as well. What does HE say about the current crisis you are in? Ask Him and then flow in what He places on your heart. ASK HIM – you may just be surprised by how He answers! AND if you have been bullied, or shamed, by others, for handling things the way you feel God has led YOU to – then pray for the shamers. Yes, pray for the blamers. They need peace just as much as you do…maybe even more so! But by all means, carry on with your God-given role in the situation and don’t allow the misplaced words, of others, to get you off-track.

I pray this helps someone out there. There really is no room for misplaced blame, or shame, during difficult times. I pray that your personal season of crisis will draw you closer to GOD and closer to your loved ones. Allow God to use hard times to root out things, within you, that are not of Him. Allow His refining Hand to bring about positive growth, and change, within you. May the peace of YHWH be upon you. May His strength carry you. May you feel His love for you in new, deeper levels…for you are so very loved now…and always.

From Stressed to Shalom

Have you ever stopped to think about how much our lives have changed in the last 30…20…or even 10 years? This is something that has been coming up more and more in conversations with my husband…not just because we’re getting older (we ARE but that’s besides the point *ehem) but also because, as children of the 80’s and 90’s, we remember what life was like before smart phones, the internet, and amazon prime. I am not totally against technology as it has provided a degree of convenience to modern day living. But let’s face it – things were simpler “back in the day”.

On top of that, the different seasons of life are something that none of us can escape from. College, career, parenting littles, raising teens, caring for elderly parents, etc – each season brings with it a new challenge and demands our attention.

I haven’t even mentioned bills, schooling, juggling career and housework and all other things that fall under the heading of: ADULTING.

At the end of the day, we often find the cry of our heart is for PEACE!!!

Thankfully, GOD makes this peace readily available to us. In fact, Philippians 4:7 mentions a peace that passes all of our understanding. The Complete Jewish Bible puts it like this:

“(Then) God’s shalom, passing all understanding, will keep your hearts and minds safe in union with the Messiah Yeshua.” (Jesus)

WHAT IS SHALOM?

But what exactly is shalom? You may have heard it used as a greeting, the same way that “hello” or “good-bye” is used. Oftentimes, it is used as a replacement for “peace” as in the above verse. But is there more to it than that? After all, when looking at words in the Hebrew language, one must consider all the possibilities of its meaning, which is often multi-layered.

Strong’s Exhaustive Concordance (#7965) states that “shalom” means: completeness, wholeness, health, peace, welfare, safety, soundness, tranquility, prosperity, perfectness, fullness, rest, harmony, the absence of agitation or discord.

Shalom comes from the root verb “shalam” (#7999 in the Strong’s Exhaustive Concordance). Some of the meanings listed for shalam are: safe, well, happy, friendly; health, prosperity, and peace.

There are 237 instances, in the Bible, where “shalom” is mentioned. The fact that it is mentioned so often tells us that it is important to God. Anything that is important to the heart of our Father God is worth paying attention to.

Clearly, shalom is so much more than just a greeting or a general state of peace. It is a blessing of health, wholeness and prosperity in every area of our lives: in a health sense, an emotional sense, a financial sense, a relational sense, a spiritual sense – everything!

Perhaps we could say that shalom is a concept that is holistic in nature. If you prefer, we could even say that shalom is a concept that is “whole-istic” as it is a blessing that ought to affect every area of our whole lives.

The thought that we should have shalom in every area of our lives may sound, at first, a bit overwhelming. After all, how does one even begin to go about achieving this?

Do we, first, have to live a life of perfection and then shalom will appear? Rather than thinking of shalom as a state of being that we must work to achieve, perhaps we should think of it as a force that we can choose to receive and lean into – a tangible force that we can move, flow and live in when we embrace the Creator’s ancient Ways.

WHERE DOES SHALOM COME FROM?

“And God, the source of shalom, will soon crush the Adversary under your feet.The grace of our Lord Yeshua (Jesus) be with you.” – Romans 16:20 (CJB)

In the above verse, we see that God, Himself, is the Author of shalom. Yes, He alone is the Source of shalom. The amount of counterfeit offers of peace, vying for our attention, are numerous.

Many good, well meaning people have been sucked into false religion, and ideologies, due to the “promises” of peace and enlightenment. Of course, the enemy of our souls sprinkles a bit of truth into every lie. This causes us to put our defenses down and sometimes we overlook the red flags of warning. Before long, we will find that we have gone way off course – down a road that is far from Creator’s Ways.

We must use discernment in these matters and research the root – the originalsource – behind such non-biblical (often mystical) beliefs. As hard as we may try, peace cannot be conjured up or manufactured by counterfeit religion. Even satan has been known to masquerade as an “angel of light” (2 Corinthians 11:14-15).

The truth is: we cannot think, medicate, or meditate ourselves into a state of shalom. It comes from Creator God alone!

PRACTICAL WAYS TO FLOW IN SHALOM

If you currently find yourself in a season where shalom seems out of reach or if you simply desire more of this powerful blessing, from GOD, below I have listed some practical ideas to consider:

1. Start your day with Creator God. Regardless of the current season you may find yourself in, your ABBA Father wants to spend time with you. He delights in you and is waiting for you to come to Him, everyday. Never underestimate the power of time spent in prayer, praise and in the Word.

2. Trust in Creator God. We were not designed to carry burdens. Lay them down at your ABBA’s feet, trusting Him to care for your every need.

3. Get rid of the old. Any old thought patterns, behaviors, or habits that don’t line up with GOD’s ways need to be kicked to the curb. Getting rid of the old junk opens up more room for the better things that your ABBA Father has planned for you.

4. Unplug. Spend more time with loved ones and nature…and less with tech.

Shalom is not an ethereal idea. It is tangible and something that we all can live, and flow, in. Thank you for allowing me to be a part of your healing journey. Shalom!