Mindfulness is a quality or state of being conscious or aware of something. Being aware of your mental state in the present moment, while calmly acknowledging and accepting one's feelings, thoughts, and bodily sensations, can be a very therapeutic technique.
How do I handle stress? Sunday we talked about one belief and three practices God has given us to help in our quest to handle stress instead of stress handling us.
The Belief - Less is better.
The Practices - Reflect, Eliminate, & Focus.
In our quest to handle stress, it is important to take time to reflect deeply and honestly, taking personal moments to look inwards and assess where we are, where we may want to go, and the steps it will take to progress in the FIVE main aspects of our lives.
Self-awareness is invaluable. Knowing what we need and then being able to attend to ourselves is so powerful. So why don't we reflect?
As I reflected on reflecting, I thought of events in our past like 911. Our nation stopped to reflect. I thought of recent events like COVID-19. Our world stopped to reflect. Life does get better when we reflect. I am sure King Solomon wrote, "Better one handful with tranquillity than two handfuls with toil and chasing after the wind", after a time of reflection. Tragedy makes us reflect. But we don't have to wait for tragedy. Reflection is a gift from God available all of the time. Reflection will help us eliminate what is not mission critical and focus on what matters most.
Here are some questions to help you start reflecting.
Who do I know that someone else needs to know?
Who has impacted my life in a positive way and why?
If money were no issue, what would I do with my life?
How can I let God control my emotions rather than people?
If God owns everything, then what is my role?
What is my body telling me?
Scripture: Ecclesiastes 4:6 (NIV)
Better one handful with tranquillity than two handfuls with toil and chasing after the wind.
"Lord, I don’t know when I started believing the lie that more is better. More "things" consume my time. More "activities" take me away from those closest to me - and away from time with you. More "desires" fill me with longing instead of thankfulness, yet even when I receive what I think I want, it leaves me with emptiness inside. Today, Lord, I choose to be thankful with my one handful. It is enough. Fill my heart with gratitude and remind me of the futility of chasing after the wind. In Jesus' Name, Amen."