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RX for Problems
Photo: Maria Pavlova
“The best cure for your own problems is to involve yourself in helping others with theirs.” That's what my mom  always told me. She has credibility in saying it, too. She is a very altruistic person and is always helping other people both anonymously and personally. She is also a dedicated prayer warrior. So when Mom says that a good cure for troubles is to help someone else, I tend to believe her.

Take yesterday, for example. My mind was heavy with multi-problems and depression was setting in. But being the leader of a children's ministry that we were resurrecting in our church, I had to attend the meeting in the afternoon, even though I admit I didn't feel like it. I was already concerned that no one would come (like the last time), and discouragement was beginning to take root. My partner, Sherrill, and I were both feeling it, but praise God, we were also feeling the need to get ourselves into the sanctuary before the meeting, fall on our knees, ask forgiveness for our lack of enthusiasm, and employ the Holy Spirit to fuel our spiritual tanks. In a weak voice, I said the words.

Newness Came Over Us

After doing this, a sense of newness came over us. We went back to the club room and practiced our puppet skit, which made us laugh since we are pure amateurs, and by the time the clock showed that it was time to pick the kids up, we were raring to go! And we were not disappointed. Every one of our regular members came, all of them in happy moods. They listened to our Bible story, enjoyed the puppet play, appreciated the healthy snack, loved the nature story, and made invitations to take to their friends for the next meeting.

As I took the children home, I felt so grateful for their part in improving my day. I had been seemingly overwhelmed earlier, but amazingly after serving these children and talking to them about Jesus and about hope, about love and about health, it had ended up rubbing off on me too. That's because it wasn't me talking. It was the Lord. What was so helpful, too, was that in a new mindset of peace and service to God, those problems I'd stressed over earlier seemed a lot more manageable.

So, Mom was right again. Helping others is truly a reliable prescription for dealing with one's own issues. It takes us away from ourselves and allows us to take on the character of God, a character of giving.

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By Gwen Scott Simmons. Copyright © 2009 by GraceNotes. All rights reserved. Use of this material is subject to usage guidelines.

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