Our families function best when all of us are in a good frame of mind. If your family is in chaos and you are left feeling overwhelmed and agitated, it may be time to do some cleaning within yourself. I have come up with something called the truth list. It has been beneficial to me and I am hopeful it does the same for you. Sometimes, you and I are the problem and we do not realize it. I do a truth list often and I do it when I feel the most overwhelmed and defeated.
Before you begin, understand that you must know God in order for the truth list to be fully effective. The best therapist you can get is Jesus. Your life depends on it. If you have not all ready, come know Him today!
A truth list should be done alone and without distraction. It is a time spent on reflecting on who you are and what you want to be. What really goes on in your mind? Be honest with yourself. It is not the picture everyone sees, it is looking at the thoughts in your head.
Many times, you and I think we can live under a veil. We can pretend to be someone on the outside and ignore the thoughts raging on the inside. We are all fairly good at acting. Those inside thoughts will eat us alive, though. So, why not tackle them?
I usually have quite a bit I add to my truth list. I tackle each issue one by one. When doing my list, I noticed my issue with jealousy. I was envious of many people. I would look at my Facebook and see all these fun things my friends were doing. I would see the success of others. Instead of being truly happy for them, I was envious. I was mad I did not have what they do. I realized my jealousy was starting to grow. I was not happy for anyone who had good things going on in their life. I felt the world was unfair. Here I am, a good person…why do I struggle? I began comparing and criticizing others in my head. I would think things like this: “why does she have all that? I know who she is and she certainly does not deserve it!”
My jealousy was spiraling out of control. It was making me bitter, envious, and left me feeling sorry for myself. This started reflecting on my outward actions. I was becoming impatient with my children and envious of my own husband.
The negative thoughts I had were beginning to surface and this is why they must be tackled.
What do we do?
Once you and I make a list, we start researching the problem. My first go to is God. I pray about my problem. I ask for guidance and direction.
I then reach for my Bible and read about my problem. There are two great apps that you can put directly on your phone that make this easy. The Olive Tree Bible app and the YouVersion Bible app. They are both free and easy to use.
The Olive Tree app is a Bible. You are reading the inspired word of God directly. This is important because it speaks to you in ways no one else can Another reason this is important is because many times humans put their own spin on things. We when read things for ourselves, we find true meaning. All you have to do with this app is put your issue in the search bar. You will find scripture related to what you are going through. Read and meditate on the words you find.
The YouVersion app is loaded with Bible studies. You simply search your issue and studies will show up related to it.
Lastly, research through Google. There are tons of blogs, articles, and information on just about any problem you desire tackling. By going through all of this, we will see that our problem is much bigger than we expected.
I spent several weeks studying jealousy. I read what the Bible had to say, I participated in Bible study and I read what psychologists and others had found. I realized jealousy would eat me alive if I did not resolve this. I continued my prayers and I avoided anything I possibly could that struck the chord of jealousy.
I can tell you, by the grace of God and through my studies and research, I am free of jealousy. Anytime a thought remotely close to jealousy gets in my mind, I avoid it and I immediately pray about it.
Do not be discouraged if you have a laundry list of issues. I know I do. Right now, I am focusing on patience. I need to have faith and hope that things will work out for the best. I make rash decisions because of my impatience and those decisions effect my career as a writer and my family as a whole. I am rushing to get things done in hopes it will get me somewhere. I am learning to be still and know everything comes in God’s timing and not my own. I still have a lot to work out when it comes to impatience. I was able to overcome jealousy, I can do this too.
Pick the issue that eats at you the most. Frequent your truth list. Things change and things can be added or removed. Nothing felt better to me than putting a big X over jealousy. It was a problem I tackled on my own with God.
There is no need to reveal what is in your head to anyone but yourself and God. I only shared to let you know you are not alone.
We will all go through phases and times of trial. What you and I cannot do is let that build up inside. When we do, it leads to other problems and eventually surfaces outwardly. These behaviors then effect the whole family.
I think most of us could agree that our family is a important thing in our lives. Having healthy relationships in the family begins with us. We all have a role (or sometimes several) to play in the family: wife, husband, parent, brother, sister..the list goes on and on. We need to be healthy in our minds in order to fill those shoes properly.
Photo credit: Diego PH @unsplash.com
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