Displaced and Distressed

What do you do when life throws you a curve? When you find yourself displaced and distressed? Here are a few things that help me.
Life throws its curves. Sometimes I respond fairly well. Other times, not so much. Sometimes I start out great! Later, I crater in tears. I’ve been hanging out in the latter camp–displaced and distressed.

Our area has had A LOT of much-needed rain in the last several weeks. Over a week ago, a series of powerful storms came through–taking my hard drive and over 500GB of data with it–pictures, home videos, and all of my writing. Fortunately, we have a backup system in place.

Although disappointed, I was still OK. After all, I had my iPhone and my iPad. I was not disconnected from my virtual world. Operating in these conditions was not ideal nor convenient, but it was workable. My heart and mind were totally satisfied, even if it was going to take a week to recover my data.

My husband installed the new hard drive and began the recovery process.

He had to restart it five times–once due to another power surge. Ugh. I was doing fine with the temporary loss–knowing that, eventually, all would be back to normal. But stopping and restarting the recovery took its toll on this 50-year-old, emotional, hot-flashing mama. After one particular stop and restart (it looked as though the recovery drive had failed), I knew I had to leave the house before I melted into a puddle of tears. I had to … get … out. Find a change of scenery. Get my mind on something completely different. Drying my sniffles, I grabbed my daughters and took them shoe shopping. (Yes, they did need new shoes! And the outing was already on the schedule!) By the time we got back, the recovery was back on track. Supposedly, to complete 14 hours and 10 minutes later. (By the way, this was not the last restart!)

My displacement had me upended, out of sorts, and unable to follow through. I started things, but didn’t finish. Without my desk, some important things didn’t get attention at all. I needed the routine that my desk–my place–gave me.

Finally, I asked myself, What’s the real deal here? How does God make a difference in this? This temporary loss of data.

I wish I could compare my distress to suffering. Paul says, “our present troubles are small and won’t last very long. Yet they produce for us a glory that vastly outweighs them and will last forever!” (2 Corinthians 4:17). True, God uses all the trouble we face to sand off character that doesn’t look like Him.

Here are a few suggestions that helped me get through this crisis.

A Perspective Check

imageIs losing data true suffering? Trouble, yes. Suffering? I don’t think so.

Especially when I recall the second image of beautiful souls being marched to their deaths at the edge of the sea. I wonder what was going through their hearts and minds. Were they feeling displaced and distressed? Certainly. But I think they must have felt that soon they would be home. Really home. This world was not their home. It’s not ours either.

“For this world is not our permanent home; we are looking forward to a home yet to come,” (Hebrews 13:14).

“Friends, this world is not your home, so don’t make yourselves cozy in it,” (1 Peter 2:11 MSG).

What about those who are truly displaced and devastated by a massive earthquake. Those who are distressed by the real possibility of a full volcanic eruption. Those who are enduring painful illness, unspeakable loss, heartbroken over their children.

Our culture is absorbed with convenience and self-satisfaction. Right now I’m sitting outside in my beautiful backyard, listening to jazz. The announcer just reminded her listeners that it’s “Jazz Appreciation Month.” Indeed, jazz is lovely–and very relaxing. Music is a gift from the Lord, and I’m thankful He allows me to enjoy it. It has helped stem my distress.

The inconvenience of being displaced from my space, the distress of restoring data over and over, is, at its worst, only frustrating.


I know the Lord cares about my cares, even though, in the grand scheme of things, this is not a big deal.

“Give all your worries and cares to God, for he cares about you.” (1 Peter 5:7).

A friend reminded me that the most important thing to do in this, and any, situation–is to pray. Indeed, the Lord does care about my cares, but I had not given this care to Him. Not once did I even think about it. I just knew everything would be OK. My husband is awwwe-some with all things technical. With Tim and time … what else did I need?

Obviously, I needed some lesson-learning.

Give Thanks

What do you do when life throws you a curve? When you find yourself displaced and distressed? Here are a few things that help me.Always be joyful. Never stop praying. Be thankful in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for you who belong to Christ Jesus,” (1 Thessalonians 5:16-18).

This is God’s will for me. And so I will give thanks.

I am thankful for … a husband who is technically savvy and able to fix this for me; for his willing heart to actually do this with all of the patience it requires; the backup data we have stored; and other ways for me to stay connected!


Trust God With the Results

This disruption caused me to reevaluate my heart’s response to my own trouble.

I wonder how I would have responded to the repeated restarts, had I started right from the beginning. I’m not so sure there would have been fewer restarts. But I think I would have been less frustrated. Maybe I wouldn’t have cratered. Maybe I would have been more patient.

On these and future days when I feel displaced and distressed, I want my heart to lean into the Lord. To give him my cares from the very beginning. And trust Him with the results.

“Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight,” (Proverbs 3:5-6 NIV).



Where I regularly link up.

Purposeful Faith with Kelly Balarie and Testimony Tuesday with Holly Barret.

Grace & Truth with Arabah Joy, Counting My Blessings with Deb Wolf, Dance with Jesus with Susan B. Mead

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21 replies

  1. Hey Dianne, you are lovely! I almost commented with a joke as you were posting on FB until I realized your genuine distress! ❤️ Thank you for your faithfulness in writing this blog, but more importantly your faithfulness to our Gos and the spreading of the Gospel. You are an inspiration! Love you my friend!

  2. So sorry for the typo! “faithfulness to our GOD!”

  3. I love seeing your heart here – so real and honest! Thanks for sharing and reminding me that God cares about everything that touches our lives!

  4. Dianne, I understand your pain, lost of your life of data! Thank you for reminding me to lean on God! My son is a computer geek and he is also an addict. This week we had to open our front door and let him know we can’t sit back watch him destory his life again with his drugs. But we did not allow him to take any of his belonging because we didn’t want him to sell them. For a week now I have sat her worried about him but my God is faithful and he will care for him. He a man not a child anymore and he has to get his self out this one or give it to God! My prayer is he gives it to God. He needs rehab and has Burnt all bridges! Soon he will figure it out. And he wants his data ( computers). But he got to get help first( again). Before that happens. I kinda feel like a surge protecter. But no weather will let me lose his data just protect it! You are such amazing inspiring woman! Thank you God is faithful all the time!!!

    • Precious Angela,

      I feel your pain! I, too, have a family member who is stuck/has been stuck in/out of addiction. I know it’s not the same as a child–I can’t imagine that. But bless you for showing him tough love! (The best surge protector I know of!) Praying God strengthens you through this real time of suffering, and that your son returns to the Lord. *hugs*

  5. Loved this post! Easily your recent blog post . I can relate to it though in different circumstances

    Loving the class I’m teaching here in Hungary. These.precious kids have opened up about their joys and struggles they are going through. Every one of them speaks,the language of the European countries they live in. At least one is not a believer but is sweet. her name is Annie.

    Not much jet lag this time. Love Diane

    Sent from my iPad


    • An incredible blessing that you get to be with these young people. Praying your time is effective with results that count for eternity!

  6. Good morning from Testimony Tuesday! I love your honesty here, and know how you feel. Handling frustration, delays, inconvenience . . . that’s my weakness. Thanks be to God that He gives grace upon grace.

  7. So glad to connect with you today! Your blog is a lovely, hope-filled place. I appreciate the verses you shared, especially as they are worded in the Message and the NLT. Thank you for sharing your words & these Scriptures – they help me to regain an eternal perspective! Gratefully ~ Renee

  8. Dianne, I had a meltdown one night, when I thought I lost all my writing! Total meltdown, then my sweet hubby said “Did you check the Trash folder?” Perhaps, like you, if I had started my pity party with prayer, it wouldn’t have evolved into a grand drama. And maybe, just maybe, I would have thought of the Trash folder myself! 🙂 Loved this post! #RaRaLinkup

  9. Dianne, UGH losing data is the worst, isn’t it? So glad God used this moment to encourage you to ‘reevaluate your heart’s response’ and thanks for inspiring me to do the same! Kim Stewart

  10. It can be so frustrating when things like this happen. I can get so worked up inside and then I carry around worry all day long. I love your approach on taking a step back to see truth. You brought the power of Jesus to the situation. I want to lean in too! Cheering you on from the #RaRalinkup on Purposeful Faith.

    • Thanks, Kelly. I carry around my worry, too. Often for more than a day. Even as I write this, the Lord is nudging me to give Him another situation. The timing of your visit is an appointment for me!

  11. Dear Diane,
    Thank you so much for taking the time to read my blog and then let me know about yours! I really enjoyed it and I am very impressed with your sight.
    I am completely new to this. The Lord put it on my heart and I thought it was a figment of my imagination. I
    had no idea where to begin and I still cannot even get my “follow button in the right place.” But the Lord kept
    nudging me so here I am!. I know in due time it will get easier.
    I am excited about following you! Maybe I will learn something to make me a better blogger.

    • So glad you were encouraged, Sandy. We all start at the beginning. God will use you! I’m sure He already has. If you want to learn more about the basics of blogging — from setting up your site, to getting more traffic, even better writing — check out WordPress’s “Blogging University.” They have a new “Blogging 101” course that starts next week! They also have a 201 course … and a Writing 101 course … I did all of these … they are worth your time … here’s the link for the next Blogging 101: https://dailypost.wordpress.com/blogging-university/

  12. Thank you so much for the info. I will check out the link immediately. I need WordPress for dummies!

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