Day 4: The Need For Numbing - How to Move from Coping to Hoping

Day 4: The Need for Numbing

“The Spirit of the Sovereign LORD is upon me,

for the LORD has anointed me

to bring good news to the poor.

He has sent me to comfort the brokenhearted

and to proclaim that captives will be released

and prisoners will be freed.”

Isaiah 61:1 (NLT)

Our world provides hundreds of easy ways to help us avoid dealing with whatever it is we are walking through. All of us, at one point or another, use one, two, or maybe all of these methods to cope with seasons of frustration.

From scrolling on social media, the 24-hour news cycle, eating because it’s in the pantry, shopping for things we don’t need, the games where you crush candies, or bingeing on a 48-episode show on Netflix, there are multiple ways to numb ourselves. We start to feel sad, depressed, let down or just plain stuck in life and we don’t know what to do, so instead we choose to numb.

When I was in a very dark season of depression, I did every single one of these things to numb myself instead of dealing with what I was walking through. OK, I didn’t shop because we barely had enough money to pick up fast food, but all the rest, I certainly did.

Thankfully, the Lord gifted me with a husband who helped me deal with this season through humor. As I would be lying in bed for the third day in a row, he began to refer to it as “Willy Wonka-ing.” If you aren’t familiar with the old 70s version of the movie, “Charlie and the Chocolate Factory,” the main character has four grandparents that lie in bed all day. Even when I was sad, it still made me laugh picturing myself as these elderly folks who had resigned themselves to lie around in their pajamas day in and day out.

My husband would have me get out of bed and we would take a walk or have a talking date on our patio. The action to move from that place of numbing almost always made me feel at least a bit better.

We numb because the pain seems too much to bear. When we have an exposed nerve in our tooth, we run to the dentist in a hurry for something to take the suffering away. We want them to numb it. But without the pain, we wouldn’t realize that something needs to be treated in the first place. In the same way, our pain is the indicator that God needs to address something.

God never intended for us to find ways to deaden ourselves to the broken pieces we seem to carry around with us. He is asking us to believe that he came to bind up our broken hearts and bring us out of our darkness and into the light. When we are tempted to numb ourselves in order to escape, let’s make a different choice. Let’s choose to tell God how much it hurts and ask for help to deal with the root of that pain.


Lord, I do use so many things in my life to numb when I can’t find a way to free myself from my frustrating and painful season. It seems I have tried everything and when those things go wrong, I feel like a failure. What I really need is to be saved. Help me remember that you are my Savior. Not just once from hell, but this day and every day after it. I need you, Lord. In Jesus’ name, Amen.

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