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“Be sure you know the condition of your flocks, give careful attention to your herds;” (Proverbs 27:23 NIV)

People are the flock.

Whoever surrounds you in your daily life, that’s your flock.   The human race contains all people of all skin colors, all ethnicities, all types.  All of us are part of God’s children.  When Jesus died for the sins of the world, He meant everyone.  Therefore, whoever is in your circle, is part of your flock. Whether they choose God, that’s a different topic.

The annoying co-worker, part of your flock.  Your family member who is like nails on a chalkboard to you, part of the herd.  Applying God’s word to these relationships is hard work.  Knowing the condition of those who annoy us helps us love them.  Sometimes, those conditions are issues that are, as my husband says, above our pay grade.

Mental illness needs professional help.

As I’ve grown in Christ, I’ve learned about mental illness, including my own.  Each of us, in some way, has issues invisible to the naked eye.  Lies we internalize and believe aren’t visible to people.  Our perspectives skew, depending on the fallacies.  Some issues are from situations.  I’ve struggled with anxiety and depression ever since my mother and nephew died.  Some days are harder than others for me.  Few people see us at our lowest, but we all are down at times.  Gratefully, God is a God of healing; in Him, I’ve overcome.  God used counseling to help me find victory.

Therapy has a bad rap.  People misunderstand a counselors purpose.  My counselor helped me understand the behaviors and thoughts that were hindering my life.  She helped me discern between my problems and my predicaments.  Problems are solvable; predicaments are not.  Therefore, solve the problems, cope with the predicaments.  Somethings I needed to solve, somethings I learned to manage.

When you see a friend in pain, recognize your limits.  Understand you are not their Savior; Jesus is.  Instead, gently point them to someone who can help them.  Sometimes, the best help you can give someone is getting them into counseling.  Talking to someone objective about your life allows a deeper level of honesty.  Knowing what is said in those sessions truly stays in those sessions develops trust.  We all have crazy thoughts in our head; verbalizing them to someone who won’t judge us is liberation from them.  They have a perspective no one else has.

In June of 2014, my car was T-boned by a taxi in Fairfax, VA.  Not until I entered counseling five years later did I understand that day’s impact on my life.  Anxiety had taken root that day, trying to steal my joy.  Only with counseling did I recognize this fact.

Know the condition of your flock.  Know your limits so you can help them best.

Question of the Day:

How’s your flock doing today?

Further Reading: Ezekiel 35-36 NIV, James 1:1-18 NIV, Psalm 116:1-19 NIV, Proverbs 27:23-27 NIV

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