Paul Tripp Ministries, Inc.
REMEMBER WITH SPECIFICITY
Two weeks ago I wrote to you about trouble. I may not know who you are or what your life has been like, but I can almost guarantee that trouble has paid a visit, is currently visiting, or will visit your life in some capacity.
When trouble comes, it’s vital that you talk to yourself. I teach this principle all the time – no one is more influential in your life than you are because no one talks to you as much as you do. What you say to you in moments of trouble will impact the way you respond.
David was a man well acquainted with trouble. Poor David; if you read the Psalms, he always seems to be in trouble! But in these moments, David was always talking to himself. We saw this in Psalm 27 – “The Lord is my light and my salvation; whom shall I fear? The Lord is the stronghold of my life; of whom shall I be afraid?” (Psalm 27:1)
There’s something else David did in times of trouble that’s very helpful; it’s found in Psalm 4 – “Answer me when I call, O God of my righteousness! You have given me relief when I was in distress. Be gracious to me and hear my prayer!” (Psalm 4:1, ESV, emphasis mine)
In the midst of trouble, David remembered the acts of God. Notice how the above phrase is in the past tense – “you have given me relief when I was in distress.” He’s not thanking the Lord for currently relieving his distressing circumstances.
What can we learn from David? In times of trouble, it’s helpful to remember with specificity the past acts of God’s relieving mercy and grace.
You and I have such a short-term memory. Because of sin, we’re all about the gratification and pleasure of today. When trouble comes knocking, we get absorbed in the immediate, forgetting what God has delivered us from in the past and what he’s transforming us into for the future.
David speaks gospel sense to his soul: “Remember, this is not new. I’ve experienced trouble in the past and God was good to me then. He remains good to me today, and what I’m facing is not out of his loving and wise rule.”
I would guess that David learned this theological skill from his ancestors. In the Old Testament, God stops the rushing waters of the Jordan River so the nation of Israel can cross on dry land. The Lord tells Joshua to set out 12 memorial stones. Why? “So that all the peoples of the earth may know that the hand of the Lord is mighty.” (Joshua 4:24)
I would encourage you to take notes from Joshua and David. Remember, with specificity, the good things God has done for you. Journal, take a picture, or do whatever else can help you, so when trouble comes knocking, you can say like David, “You have given me relief when I was I distress.”
Paul David Tripp
How often do you talk to yourself?
Reflect on some of the things you’ve said to yourself in the past week. What were you saying to you?
What, or who, are some influences that can shape what you say to you?
What are some examples from your life when God has given you relief from distress?
How can you create “memorial stones” to remind yourself that the hand of the Lord is mighty?
This young man is amazing and a great inspiration to do God’s work.
What is depression? It is a normal natural response to loss. When you lose a personal relationship, this is as major a loss as you can have in life. Depression is the result! You can lose your home to fire and experience the very same depth of loss. The pain is the same! I know because I have experienced it. People and things we invest in, gone or taken from us are a loss. Our very Soul recoils in pain. Do not get down on yourself for this! Take care of your soul as you would your child…. Be gentle, it is on track towards healing.
Proverbs 13:12 says Hope deferred makes the heart grow sick.
Don’t believe those worthless “feelings”. In fact, Feelings lie at times! Some will tell you otherwise, but there is a difference between instinct or intuition, and “feelings”. You may feel that this will never end. But if you follow wisdom, you will heal and this too shall pass. One day you will look back and it will just be a ‘memory’. The feelings will have faded.
So, in seeking wisdom, read your book, do the homework, Center on Jesus, His plan, His love for us each as an individual. Take one day at a time, feel the pain, learn from it, if you are depressed more than four weeks and it is making you worse off, a bit of medication may be needed. It will not take away your pain or the feelings, but will buffer it so that you can manage your responsibilities a little better and “think” better.
Chart your feeling on a calendar or in your book. Watch The Lord act and orchestrate, in your life.
Jesus, be my Center. Amen
You might know this, you might not. For us guys, we might not realize we’re depressed. Okay, maybe you girls recognized these signs in your (ex)husbands.
Click the link for the Yahoo News article, and let us know what you think.
Not a good day to ask me these questions…. I had a rough week, topped off with a rough weekend. I have hardly moved from the sofa last night or today. I bailed on church this morning. Just didn’t want to put on the “happy” face and pretent everything is ok. I didn’t have the energy. Having a very hard time shaking it all off. I go up and down. Tired of having no money, dealing with stress and life issues alone, and topped the weekend off by seeing “him” with “her” at his grandmother’s 90th birthday party. I was there to celebrate with Mammy and include my daughter in the celebration. But it was far from easy. And I just can’t seem to shake it since.
It’s only been 15 months and I can’t handle the loneliness… how am I going to feel in 2, 3, or 5 years. My college daughter went back to school last week after the Christmas vacation and my 16 year old is working every weekend. I am spending more time alone than I care for. I know I have lots of friends that always say.. .”just call. Your welcome any time”. I know they mean well, but I can’t spend my whole life hopping from one friend’s house to another. I need to accept that I am alone and learn how to deal with. Lord knows, I have enough housework and home “stuff” that needs to get done. I just can’t shake my depression some days and muster up the motivation to do anything. I am counting the days til Spring and the sunshine. I don’t think Winter helps me at all. Just another down period to get through… the up will come eventually. I can honestly say the good days were starting to out number the bad, but this week has made up for it I think.
In Memory of Kerry, may this Blog be a Comfort place for you to come, a place to air our private thoughts, in the safety of a ‘secure’ zone, a place to draw encouragement from, & if no one is home, a place to link to the same through nite sounds, and so on….