When we find ourselves stuck in life, it is a wake up call that something needs to change. The stuck phase may be caused by circumstances we did not create. Sometimes,though, we have let fear keep us from addressing the road block. Conquering the “stuckness” is always a matter of perception.

I find that three things are essential. One is prayer. Prayer may seem like an inactive thing to do, but can be a life-giving breath of fresh air when we do pray. Not all prayer will do. When prayer becomes totally focused on our fears or circumstances, we are merely talking to ourselves. It is important that we realign our emotional state by going beyond ourselves. The Bible exhorts us in Colossians 3 to set our affections on things above, not earthly things. This is not to deny the reality of things we face but realizing that present crises are not the whole picture.

Secondly, we need people who have our backs, people who care just as much about our success as we do. Comfort may be helpful, but to get past the impasse we must confront it head long. We cannot see a larger perception with the same mindset that gets us stuck. Friends can help here. Friends call out any self-deprecation they see in us. They also can call “foul” when people or circumstances have bumped us off-balance. 

Thirdly, then there is some action we are required to do. Some movement that gets us to a new place. This may require more discomfort, but it is a “yes” that begins to open up new possibilities. I love the statement that Thomas Merton says in his book No Man is an Island, “when a door closes the whole world opens up to you.” That openness will mean we need to do something that explores other options for us. Then, as we move in a direction, we adjust the course as we receive input through prayer and honest friends and colleagues.

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