Friday, February 27, 2015

Focus Friday: Let's Focus on Rebellion

Today we're focusing on rebellion. This is not a comfortable topic for me. I don't like to admit that I'm ever rebellious. I like others to think of me as a cooperative, helpful, compliant person. I seldom show my rebellious side to my friends and acquaintances, but my family sees it some days. I don't want to clean the bathroom so it goes for way too many days until it really needs it. I get ticked with my hubby about something minor and I give him the cold shoulder for a while until I get over it. I don't feel like doing our taxes so I wait until close to the deadline.

Last week I told you how I was switching to a new med for depression. Well, this week I have felt pretty good as I've been tapering off Lexapro. So good, in fact, that I called my doctor today and asked if I could try just staying on 10 mg of it for a while and see how it goes. The nurse said she would ask her and call me back. When she did, she firmly stated that my doctor wanted me to go on the Cymbalta as we had talked about at my last visit. "But...but..." I stammered. "Couldn't I just try it for a week and then I can start the Cymbalta if I need to?" The nurse repeated my doctor's instructions again and stressed the fact that we had planned this at my last appointment. My doctor noted that my depression was worse on 10 mg of Lexapro and that's why we were changing to a new med. I said okay and hung up, but I was very disappointed. My thoughts have been fighting all afternoon: 

You really need to obey your doctor's instructions and go on the new medicine.

Maybe I could just try it for a week and then talk to her again when I still feel good...then she'll understand that I don't need to switch.

Notice that the good advice is from outside (You...) while the rebellious thoughts just focus on myself (I...). I've heard lots of stories about people who go off their medicines because they feel good and then they get into a worse mess because the depression or other mental health problem comes back worse than ever. In my heart, I know I'm silly to think that I know better than an experienced psychiatrist (they must get so tired of hearing their patients question their instructions!). So, I will obey and go on the new medicine and I'll keep talking to my doctor until we figure out what works best for me.

During devotions yesterday (February 26) I read from "Jesus Calling" and was struck by the reminder that all forms of worry are an act of rebellion: doubting Jesus' promises to care for us. Whenever we worry about something we need to repent and return to Jesus. I've written about this before, but I don't think I've learned this lesson yet. It seems so natural to worry about all sorts of things. It can't be a sin, can it? 

The truth is, God tells us not to worry and promises His peace when we pray and turn our worries over to Him as we thank Him. Thank Him for depression? Thank Him for a disobeying child? Thank Him for a chronic illness? Thank Him for an uncertain future? Thank Him for financial problems? Yes, as hard as it may be, we can choose to thank God for all of those things and anything else we're tempted to worry about. Let's focus on obeying when we feel that spirit of rebellion rising up in us.

"I will instruct you and teach you in the way you should go; I will counsel you and watch over you." (Psalm 32:8 NIV)

Do you rebel against good advice sometimes? Would you rather do exactly what you want to do? How can focusing on God and thanking Him instead of worrying bring us more peace?


  1. It's so hard when you want something to be true. Like I want it to be true that my husband should do all the laundry or I want it to be true that I am so self sacrificing. Thank you for the reminder that it's what I want and what is true are not always the same thing.

    1. So true, Jessie. I hope we can both get better at obeying God and not rebelling when we don't get our own way. Hang in there! ~Robyn