Janet Weaver Smith – 3-17-2020 ©gardenministries.org
When crisis and change happen, we need to re-prioritize how we do life so we don’t freeze with worry or sink in shock. Sorting out what our non-negotiable priorities are from negotiable priorities will help us simplify the process.
When re-prioritizing, think about Relationship and Communication. Ask, “Who and what are my most important relationships and what needs to be done to best preserve, support, and sustain them? What is my communication plan to stay close to these relationships?”
Relationships: God, family, friends, co-workers, bosses, employee’s, pets. These are some of the main relationships affected by change. Which relationships are non-negotiable and have highest priority? Which ones, if any, are negotiable? How do we grow the non-negotiable relationships in the midst of change? Once we prayerfully reassess our relationships and re-prioritize them, we can pursue the ones that will best help us weather the changes with greater peace and joy.
Caring for our family and our living environment is always a high, non-negotiable priority, but how we care for them may need re-prioritizing. If the change is evolving, then our response is evolving. If the change is sudden and dramatic, then our response may need to be immediate and dramatic. Whatever the magnitude of the change determines the magnitude of our response.
Denial is only a temporary stage in the grieving process. If we stick our head in the sand and stay in a bubble of denial too long, we will miss important windows of opportunity to better respond to the next stages of impact that are still coming. Waves and birthing contractions come in sets. As we learn the rhythms of these waves, we can better position ourselves for the next wave.
Our first relationship priority is to humble ourselves before Creator God and turn to Him in prayer. Prioritizing our relationship and communication with Jesus Christ as our First Love sets the right atmosphere for planning and comes from a place of abiding in Him.
2 Chronicles 7:13-14 If I shut up the heavens so that there is no rain, or if I command the locust to devour the land, or if I send pestilence among My people, 14 and My people who are called by My name humble themselves and pray and seek My face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, will forgive their sin and will heal their land.
Good humor is especially helpful during hard times and joyful fellowship can strengthen us. Conversely, a flippant or overly casual response to a serious turn of events is unwise.
Isaiah 22:12-14 Therefore in that day the Lord God of hosts called you to weeping, to wailing, to shaving the head and to wearing sackcloth. 13 Instead, there is gaiety and gladness, killing of cattle and slaughtering of sheep, eating of meat and drinking of wine: “Let us eat and drink, for tomorrow we may die.” 14 But the Lord of hosts revealed Himself to me, “Surely this iniquity shall not be forgiven you until you die,” says the Lord God of hosts.
Values: What practical, spiritual, emotional, mental, and physical values are non-negotiable? What values are negotiable? If change requires us to let go of negotiable values, we need to let them go.
Matthew 6:33 But seek first His kingdom and His righteousness, and all these things will be added to you.
In my article entitled, The Global Economic Shift that Sifts and Sorts Out the Real and The Unshakeable, I described the importance of relationship during crisis. Here’s an excerpt from that article:
“What these retirees can look forward to on the other side of this global economic shift is the true wealth of forming real relationships before the economic shift happens. These relationships would help them survive and recover from the changes.
Luke 16:9 I tell you, use worldly wealth to gain friends for yourselves, so that when it is gone, you will be welcomed into eternal dwellings.
Then ..it was time for me to leave this [burning] building…I was headed toward the exit when security personnel stopped me and asked for my ID before I exited. It’s strange that I would need an ID to get out. A person usually needs an ID to get in. I didn’t have my purse or my ID with me so I had to go back inside the tightly secured area to look for my purse. I … was surprised to find it sitting there unattended. I looked through my purse and noticed that most of the contents were gone but the cash was untouched. The cash seemed to have no value.
I believe this … means that there is no way to physically anticipate and prepare for what is lost, left behind, or even stolen in this economic shift. We will be left with what is left and will have to go with what is there once everything falls and starts to sort itself out.
Besides the obvious need to keep our eyes on Jesus through the big changes ahead; prayer, and cultivating heart-knit relationships with strong communication are the priceless treasures we will be the most grateful for after this globally impacting economic shift sorts out what is real and what is unshakeable.”
— end of excerpt
A global shift is underway. Here are a few tips to help us stay focused on Jesus as we set new priorities:
• Get above the storm and pray, “COME LORD JESUS COME!
• Praise the Lord, dance before Him, worship Him, and bring His light into your spiritual atmosphere!
• Be humbly honest when we feel afraid. Ask your spiritual family for help and prayer.
• Ask the Lord to deliver us from the fear of death so down the road, we are not vulnerable to taking the mark of the beast.
• Get out of our comfort-zone boats and ask for the faith to walk on the water with Jesus. Luke 18:8 I tell you that He will bring about justice for them quickly. However, when the Son of Man comes, will He find faith on the earth?
• Ask the Father, seek His face, knock on His door in pray and love Him with your whole heart, mind, and soul. Our Heavenly Father loves spending time with His children.