Slump is a dirty word in the sports world especially in the world of baseball and softball. As an athlete, you never want to be in a slump because that means you aren't hitting very well or if you are pitcher, everyone is hitting well. The thing about being in a slump is you usually have no idea how you got there and no idea how to get out.
I don't play baseball or softball, but do go through slumps. It's those times when your life just keeps giving you curve balls. During my slumps, I get tired, overwhelmed, impatient, discouraged, lonely as a mom, as a wife, as a friend, as a person in ministry. I just can't seem to do it all or do anything well, at least. I am learning what leads to my slumps and how to get out of them. During one of my slumps, I had just come out of a very taxing ministry season and I was drained spiritually, mentally, physically, and emotionally. I opened my bible and was needing to hear from Jesus when I read this....
"I know all the things you do. I have seen your hard work and your patient endurance. I know you don't tolerate evil people....you have patiently suffered for me without quitting."
I remember reading this thinking, "Oh God, thank you. You do see everything I have done for your kingdom and you do see me." THEN, I continued reading...
"But I have this complaint against you. You don't love me or each other as you did at first!. Look how far you have fallen! Turn back to me and do the works you did at first. If you don't repen,. I will come and remove your lampstand from its place among the churches."
Oh crap...he had seen everything I had done, but didn't care because I had neglected the reason why I did them, HIM. I had neglected my first love, HIM. I had done so much for him without HIM. As my pastor describes it, I had become a full time minister, part time follower of Christ. I had become a full time mom and wife and part time follower of Christ. And he made it very clear, He would have no problem removing my lampstand from its place or in my case, removing me from ministry if it brought me back to him and seeking His face full time. He didn't need my ministry, he wanted me. For you, you may be a full time mom, part time follwer of Christ and you are in a slump. You may be a full time teacher and a part time follower of Christ and you are in a slump. You may be a full time volunteer and a part time follower of Christ and you are in a slump. You may be a full time problem fixer and a part time follower of Christ and you are in a slump. When we get these roles reversed is when we are likely to go into a slump.
So How do we get out of the slump? It doesn't matter whether it is a slump in your marriage, a slump with your relationship with Jesus, a slump in your job, a slump with your kids....we get out of them the same way. We "Turn back to Jesus and do the works we did at first."
It's kinda like when my kids are trying to get their zipper zipped on their coats and it the zipper gets stuck (which is every day) and I tell them the same thing every time, "Go backwards in order to go forwards." When we get stuck in a slump we must go backwards in order to go forwards. We must go back and do what we did at first....if'its in your marriage, go on dates again, write love notes, send sweet messages, all the stuff you did when you were first dating .If it's your children, play with them, read a book to them, all the things we couldn't wait to do before we had children. If it's your relationship with Jesus, go on dates with Jesus. Get in His word and read His sweet messages to you. Read His Word to change, not to finish. Listen to praise music and let them be God's love songs to you. Do all the things you did at first when you couldn't get enough of Jesus.
Everyone goes through slumps, so please know you are not alone. We want to put on the face that everything is alright all the time. We need to be real with each other and the times we are going through our slumps so that we can help each other through them. Will you be real today? I will start...
"Hi my name is Sarah Roberts and I struggle with slumps"