Several years ago, our family all met together in Estes Park, Colorado to spend a week together. Even though it was Spring, Mother Nature decided to provide us with a nice blanket of snow. It turned the mountains around us into a winter wonderland; one of the most beautiful places I’ve ever been.
For me, the time was a gift to my photography side. I was able to step outside onto the balcony, as in the picture today, and grab a shot of the sunset over the mountains. Pure heaven. Others, though they enjoyed the beauty, were searching for things to do.
Because of the weather, we were unable to do some of the activities we’d planned for the week leaving the kids cabin-bound. With over nine kids, the boredom set in quickly. Parents, Grandparents, and Aunt & Uncles all tried their best to keep them busy, but after a few days, the signs of ‘cabin fever’ were setting in.
Much to the older adult’s relief, the kids were eventually able to get out and enjoy the snow, do some shopping in the quaint small town, and see some of the scenery. Still, it was an interesting study of human nature when trapped in a small space with little to do and nowhere to go; even though we were in the midst of heavenly beauty.
I asked Google to give me a definition of cabin fever and her response came from Wikipedia which seemed pretty accurate:
“…Cabin fever describes the extreme irritability and restlessness a person may feel in these limiting situations. Cabin fever is also associated with boredom from being indoors for a lengthy amount of time. A person may experience cabin fever in a situation such as being isolated within a vacation cottage out in the country, or away from civilization.”
Many of us can experience this same feeling in our daily lives. Perhaps we feel trapped in a relationship, in our career (or lack thereof), or even by memories of our past. It happens to all of us to be honest. Any one of us may go through a season when we feel trapped. Our reaction can be to lash out in irritation with others, find things to fill the void that may include taking unnecessary risks, or even walk away from everything to chase a dream.
Cabin fever, or a sense of isolation, is a natural reaction. Ironically, there are some simple, yet helpful ways we can cope with it. If we’re feeling trapped in our job, we don’t have to quit, but we can begin searching for a better one. If we feel trapped in a relationship, it may not be easy, but we can ask God to show us what we need to do to change it or make it better. If we feel trapped in life altogether, instead of running, we can seek God’s help to show us what His plan is for our lives.
I can’t say it’s going to be easy to get out of that cabin of life. We may be snowed in with no way out. We may be able to step outside, however, and find hope by looking at the sunset over the distant mountains.
If that’s you tonight, I want to encourage you that these seasons never last forever. If we can find something to change the routine we feel trapped in, we may just find what we have isn’t so bad after all. Most of all, if we can look past the feelings of isolation to ask God’s help, who is always with us, He can provide hope, joy, and a path out of our cabin into His perfect plan.
For some of us, being in that cabin may be His plan for us and we just can’t see it yet. He may want us to slow down, take an account of our life, and learn to be content, or learn how to live with those around us (even if we are driving each other crazy). In that cabin, He may speak to us things we would have never heard if we hadn’t been there.
I don’t have all the answers my friends, but I know He does. Trust in that tonight. Know that He will provide a way no matter how bad life may seem or how much cabin fever you may be feeling in the cabin of life; because, He loves you…
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