Praying Through Tough Times


Praying when life is overpowering or stressful is difficult to do. When there is an increase in your student’s tuition from last year without an increase in your paycheck, it is easy to forget about praying and focus on what you can do instead.  When the biopsy comes back malignant, praying may be the last thing on your mind.  You want to put all your faith in the doctors and the treatment.  When the report is due by midnight, you do not have time for praying.  You rely on your skills and knowledge to ace the report.

Having a mental illness is not always easy to handle at times, either. Praying is often the last thing we do.  We look to our psychiatrists, therapists, medications and support groups to help.

The baggage you may feel that comes along with the diagnosis can be all-consuming. Some of the baggage that maybe experienced are:

  • feeling physically ill for no apparent reason;
  • afraid of the stigma that goes along with having a mental illness;
  • unable to relate to friends and family;
  • undergoing new symptoms of the illness from time to time;
  • facing side effects from the new medications you may try; and
  • the list goes on.

If you pair having a mental illness with all its challenges along with trying to lead a “normal” life, you may become overwhelmed and overburdened. Recently, I have become overwhelmed with my life.  I felt that the walls of life were closing in on me.  I found myself getting anxious and reaching out for help.  It seemed as if life had become unmanageable.

I discovered instead of praying, I went to food for comfort. Sometimes I would text a friend and moan and groan to her.  Or, I would worry and stress about the problem as if it were my problem to solve in the first place.

In the end, I eventually found my way back home to Jesus. It may take a while, but He is always patient with me.  I would realize that all the other ways of handling my problems were futile compared to praying to the one Who could calm the storm, make the blind see, the lame walk and raise the dead.

When I finally remember to go to the universe’s Problem Solver, I start praying. I do not have special prayers that I recite or special songs that I sing.  The prayer could be as simple as “Help me!”

When my life became unmanageable, I began praying to God and telling Him I needed help. He chose to use my husband as a vessel in which to work through.  I confessed to my husband that I felt overwhelmed and my schedule was too stressful for me.  With his view outside of the situation, he was able to see that I was unable to manage my time.  He then helped me get on a schedule that has been very doable.

If you have something pressing in on your life, go pray to God. He cares for you.  He may not heal your mental illness or your cancer or reduce the tuition at the university, or write the report but He will walk with you all the way through it.  He will also bring praying people in your life who will be willing to walk beside you.