Summary: How to Face the emotional blizzards of life
What do you think of when you think of winter? usually people think of cold weather, sometimes bitter cold. In some places winter brings dangerous blizzards wet dreary days frequented with cold soaking rains, Ice Storms, sleet and snow. Sometimes snows so deep your trapped inside your house. Often the weather makes traveling dangerous due to the deep snow and treacherous ice that can coat the roads which can sometimes restrict travel to emergency travel only.
But winter also causes an increase in people feeling lonely, melancholy, depressed, abandoned, and even sucidial. This is so common it is called Seasonal Affected Disorder or SAD. Why do people feel this way?
1) Scientifically one reason could be a decrease in the production of seratonin levels caused by a decrease in the amount of sunlight people receive during the winter months.
2) Emotionally it can be because people can feel
a) Overwhealmed - people can feel overwhealmed by many factors. They can be overwhelmed by life in general or holiday preparations. By having bills pile up and feeling like they are drowning in debt; They could feel overwhelmed by the loss of a job, becoming homeless; They might feel overwhelmed by their inability to provide for their family the way they feel they should. Maybe because they can not provide gifts for their children, some people can not even afford to buy clothes for their kids and that can overwhelm them driving them to dispare.
b) Alone - Sometimes people feel alone especially during this time of the year. This time of year stresses fun, laughter and spending time with friends and family. Sometimes people feel disconnected, separated or estranged from friends and family. People who are ’caught up’ in the ’hustle and bustle’ of the holiday season. people often get so caught up in the ’spirit’ of the season (shopping, parties, presents, ect..) that they forget those who are elderly, in hospitals, in nursing homes, and children’s homes, or in shelters. They forget those who are away from their families. They forget the mothers and fathers who are separated from their children by prison, a job or military service.
That feeling can be greatly amplified during this time of the year, by.the pressure to be ’happy’. Sometimes this feeling of not fitting in drives people into a deeper shell, they feel like a failure because they don’t have the ’holly jolly spirit’ like they think they should. everything about this season amplifies their feelings of lonliness.
c) Unloved - it is not uncommon for people to feel unloved during this time of the year. They look around and see others laughing, hugging, holding hands and kissing. Just because someone is married, engagaed or dating that does not exempt them from having feelings of being unloved. Feelings can be irrational, meaning that they are not based on the facts or evidence that can be seen or they can be rational based on evidence or a lack there of.. Husbands how many times has your wife been upset and said you don’t love her? You naturally disagree and say ’baby you know I love you’ and her response is “how can I know that you never tell me any more”, or she might say “you never show me that you love me”.
d) Betrayed and abandoned - at this time of the year we expect our friends and families to be there for us, to love us to help us. Sometimes we are betrayed by the ones we love, the ones we expect to be there for us when we hurt, when we are in need, or when we are feeling alone. But the storms of winter rage in our personal lives we often find ourselves facing these storms alone. People give signals that they are hurting or they need a friend to listen to them. Sometimes we shut them out because we are so focused on our own selves and what we want during this time, that we forget about other people, we forget about their needs and their feelings.
We betray peoples hope and abandon them to the blizzards of dispare that rage in their lives. We abandon people to emotionally freeze to death in the winter storms of doubt and dispare, we let them be overwhelmed by the bitter cold ice storm of lonliness because we are to busy to stop and care.
But I want you to think about a few points.
1) When you feel overwhelmed, remember that Jesus promises to carry your burden for you. Matt 11:28
2) When you feel like you are alone, remember that God promises to always be with you. Deut 31:6
3) When you feel abandoned and betrayed, remember that Jesus understands how you feel because he was abandoned and betrayed so that you could have a relationship with God. A relationship not based on your feelings which change like the South Texas weather, but based on the unchangeable promises of God. An eternal relationship paid for by the Blood of Christ, secured by the death and burial of Christ and seen in the resurrection of Christ. John 14:17