by Theresa Goyette

From Pastor Joe: Theresa has a pastoral heart, and serves faithfully on the CTR staff designing and implementing curriculum and reaching kids for Jesus in our Children’s Ministry. We are thankful for the way she disciples our children each week, and also for ministering to all of us with her writing here:

What comes to your mind when you hear the word grounded? If a plane is grounded, it causes all kinds of grief for passengers who were depending on that flight. If a ship is grounded on an object at sea . . . well, talk about a sinking feeling. And if a parent grounds one of their children, the whole family suffers the consequences. Am I right? This time of ‘safer at home’ feels a lot like being grounded. It’s just that everyone we know is grounded too!

There is another (positive!) meaning to that word. If a person is anxious, therapists recommend that they try grounding. Grounding can be accomplished through many techniques, but basically what is involved is getting rid of the anxious thoughts and fears that are swirling around in your mind by focusing instead on what is real and immediate. One common method is naming things that you can see, touch, hear, or smell and an emotion that you feel. Using your senses, you ground yourself in the present moment, by focusing on what is REAL and what is happening NOW.

There are so many unknowns right now that cause us to be anxious. How long will this COVID-19 crisis last? When can I see my friends and family members again? What will happen to our economy or the stock market? Will we have to go through this all over again next flu season?

When anxious thoughts occur, try this method to stay ‘grounded’ in the knowledge that God is REAL and He is here NOW.
SEE:
Look around. What do you see that reminds you that God is present? How is that evidence of God at work in your life? You can use this format: When I see___, it reminds me that God ____.
Here are few from me to get you started.
When I see… the mourning dove sitting on her nest on my front porch, it reminds me that God… can be seen in His creation and that He cares for us even more than the birds of the air. (Matthew 6:25-34)
When I see… my grandchildren over Zoom, it reminds me that God… desires me to come to Him as a little child with complete trust in Him. (Matthew 18:4)
When I see posts on Facebook of people reaching out to others, ….it reminds me that God…is at work in the lives of His people. (Eph 2:10)

TOUCH:
What can you touch that reminds you that God is present? How is that evidence of God at work in your life? You can use this format: When I touch\feel ____ it reminds me that God ____.
When I feel the softness of a blanket wrapped around me…, it reminds me… of God’s goodness and protection. (Psalm 31:19)
Now you’re getting the hang of it!

HEAR:
Think of worship songs that encourage you. Sing them out loud right where you are. If you don’t know all the words, sing the words you do know or look up the song on YouTube.
Read Scripture out loud. The spoken Word of God is powerful!

SMELL: This one is tougher, but you can do it! What can you smell that reminds you that God is present? How is that evidence of God at work in your life? You can use this format: When I smell ____, it reminds me that God ____.
When I smell supper cooking, it reminds that God has faithfully provided for me today. (Phil 4:19)

EMOTION: 
Turn this one around. Instead of dwelling on emotions you are feeling, consider what God is feeling toward you. There are so many passages that describe God’s love for His people. Here are a few to consider:
1 John 3:1 | Psalm 139:1-18 | Psalm 37:23-24

Prayer: LORD, help us to stay grounded in the knowledge that You are REAL and working in our lives right NOW. Help us to be aware of the overwhelming evidence around us that You love us. Remind us of that daily LORD. In Jesus Name, Amen.

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