Pleasing God, Making Disciples of Jesus Christ

Lessons Learned When Being Overwhelmed

PSALM 129:1-2 – “Greatly have they afflicted me from my youth”— let Israel now say— “Greatly have they afflicted me from my youth, yet they have not prevailed against me.”

THEME OF THE DAY. LESSONS LEARNED WHEN BEING OVERWHELMED. We often feel like it. Many times the floodwaters of life make us feel like it. It is that sickly experience of having a sense of being overwhelmed in life. Whatever it may be – tough relationships, trying circumstances, or difficult situations, every person, and every Christian will feel overwhelmed. In today’s Psalm, the author is right there with us. He uses the word “greatly” twice to describe his feeling of being overwhelmed. And that is where God will take every child of His – to a place more than being overwhelmed to where this is no hope of deliverance apart from Him. In today’s scripture, the Psalmist reveals two of the lessons God would have for us when we are truly overwhelmed in life.

First, when feeling overwhelmed in life we are to learn that life is full of such experiences. It is so easy to not only want an easy life, but expect an easy life where everything is fairly manageable on our own. And God will not allow us to keep those expectations long. Why? That is not life in a cursed world. Sin has made life confusing and overwhelming. We cannot expect, seek, or be surprised that life is full of “floodwaters of difficulties” overwhelming us. The Psalmist says, “Greatly have they afflicted me from my youth.” He states this twice. We don’t know how old he was but time has passed in his life. He looks back at his youth and acknowledges there has always been trouble. Friends, we must get to this place ourselves. Job said, “Man who is born of woman is few of days and full of trouble” (Job 14:1). Don’t expect not to be overwhelmed in life. It will happen. God will ensure it will happen and that leads to the second lesson learned when being overwhelmed.

When life feels overwhelming, do what the Psalmist who also was feeling overwhelmed did. He remembered. He remembered how God was faithful to Him –“yet they have not prevailed against me.” During those times and seasons in life of feeling overwhelmed by the rising floodwaters of difficulties, pause, and look back at God’s faithfulness in other such seasons. Did He not protect you then? Did He not prove Himself trustworthy then? Remember our God does not change. Who He is and what He did for us yesterday, He will be and do today, and tomorrow. It is when we feel overwhelmed, the opportunity before us is to trust God, submit to Him, and allow this overwhelming situation become a platform for us to overwhelmingly praise God for His faithfulness to us and His Word. Cling to this truth in all seasons, we walk in faithfulness, but not in ourselves – For your steadfast love is before my eyes, and I walk in your faithfulness (Psalm 26:3).

PRAYER: “Father, I praise You for Your constant protection and watch care over me, even, when I struggle to believe it.”

QUOTE: “Every Christian will be greatly tried, greatly assaulted, but will also be greatly protected by our Great God.”