This word, this theme, this state of mind and common description of life seems to come up in every conversation I have with women. Where two or more are gathered, someone is overwhelmed. Just this week, in the few adult conversations I’ve participated in, a woman has said it…
I’m so overwhelmed.
Why? I’ve been thinking about this a lot. Being a woman must predisposition us to this condition. Do men experience it but just use a different word? Maybe they only speak of it with each other, but I just don’t hear too many guys say, “I feel so overwhelmed.” I do hear them use the word, stressed.
Are they the same? I think it’s kind of like sad and depressed. Both essentially mean the same thing, but to different degrees. Well, let’s just ask Webster. Or Google.
overwhelm: 1.to bury or drown beneath a heavy mass 2. defeat completely
3. inundate Synonyms: submerge, engulf, bury, trounce, conquer, vanquish, overpowered
Let’s think about fighters. We recently watched the movie, “Here Comes the Boom.” I’m a sucker for “based on a true story” and this one did not disappoint. Watch it with your kids. Our family gave it eight thumbs up. In this movie an out of shape, out of inspiration teacher finds himself cage fighting for a cause. I promise this has something to do with us girls.
The word “stressed” is like a fighter in the ring getting hit. Wham! Pow! Stress is coming at him from the left and the right, sometimes below the belt. But according to the definition of “overwhelmed”, the fighter is on the mat, seeing stars, defeated, unable to get to his feet. Overpowered.
Today I heard a word in a message at Journey Church that I don’t remember hearing when speaking of God.
Would you agree that if we are living frantic lives of worry and fear that we are unimpressed with God? If we believe how powerful he is, how significant he is, how loving he is, would we still be overwhelmed by life? What I’m saying is that the same God who raised Jesus from the dead, who parted the Red Sea, who knows every star in the universe by name loves us completely. Unconditionally. This almighty mystery wrapped in grace and love says he has a plan for our hope and future!
Girls, I have lived too many days unimpressed with God. I will not take credit for this next statement. It rattled my soul today. Know that as I write this I am there with you, on the mat. I’ve seen stars and I have curled up in a fetal position and cried the word, “overwhelmed” until I could not find one more tear. Read these words and pause to let God undo you.
“We look at our problems so closely for so long that they seem bigger than our God.”
Now here is the truth.
“The significance of my problem pales in comparison to my God.”
In shame I ask myself, “how can I forget how awesome You are?” How can I believe that I am defeated, engulfed, buried beneath a heavy mass when my savior has risen from the dead and given me life? How can I feel alone in my struggles when Jesus gave his life to be with me, giving me his Holy Spirit? Isn’t he the God I want to serve? The one who overcomes? The one who defeats death on my behalf ?
In this life we will have trouble and pain, some whose depths I cant begin to imagine. We will be stretched and pulled by the demands of this world. The enemy will heap guilt and shame on us. He will convince us to compare ourselves, leaving us feeling like we are not enough. The ruler of this world will use every lie and weapon imaginable to help us forget the God we serve. If we allow him, he will indeed deceive us to believe that our problems are bigger than God.
I am convinced that in our deepest pain and during our most demanding days, God is still offering us hope and abundance. His love is beyond our hurt. His power is beyond our need. He’s bigger. Beyond. Above. Surrounding. He can engulf and defeat our unbelief. He is the heavy weight that can bury and drown our fear and worry. This world’s dangers and snares will still exist, but my God can lift me off the mat to my feet. After all, he has overcome the world!
How impressed are we with God? He is beyond it all and waiting to overwhelm us with his power and goodness!
I want to share the Word of God with you because his Word is powerful. Soak it up and let Him pull you to your feet.
Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. and the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. – Philippians 4:6-7
The Lord is my shepherd , I lack nothing. – Psalm 123:1
I lift up my eyes to the mountains-where does my help come from? My help comes from the Lord, the maker of heaven and earth. – Psalm 121:1-2
“For I alone know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord; “plans to prosper you, not to harm you, plans to give you a hope and a future.” – Jeremiah 29:11
He gives strength to the weary and increases the power of the weak. Even youths grow tired and weary and young men stumble and fall, but those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint. – Isaiah 40:29-31
Come to me all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light. -Matthew 11:28-30
Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen – Ephesians 3:20
Be impressed with God today. He is who he says he is. He is big enough to carry you.