The Upward Spiral

I didn’t even have to learn it. The Downward Spiral was second nature by second grade. Fear, hurt, pride, anxiety – descending into depression and darkness. I spent most of my teens and early twenties stuck in the spiral, trying to claw my way out of it.

But I’m learning (rather slowly) how to be gathered into the Upward Spiral. Gratitude, humble supplication, and praise – ascending to joyful Light.


I recently read Psalm 105 and there it was, as if illuminated on the thin page, the simply profound guide to the Upward Spiral.

Oh give thanks to the Lord, call upon His name;

Make known His deeds among the peoples.

Oh give thanks to the Lord …. Recognize God for who He is. Creator and Giver and Savior. Even when darkness surrounds our circumstances or our souls, there is always something to be grateful for if we are children of God. We look to the empty tomb and remember our great inheritance in the kingdom of His Dear Son. You can read more about how I’m learning to give thanks in my last post: Joy in the Whirlwind.

Call upon His name. Draw near to God. Humbly seek Him as the only answer, the only thing that can fill our emptiness. Only in Him do we find joy, strength, love, satisfaction, and strength to face darkness with hope. The Light has come!

When we call on God, it’s another way of recognizing His involvement in all things. My family and I are learning more about how to seek God, even in the smaller details of life, as we follow His lead into a new ministry.  Not only have we called on Him for help in circumstances but also for help in our hearts – for peace in upheaval, for kindness in tense situations, for wisdom in decision making, for strength in weakness.

But it’s amazing how easy it is to neglect God in these times too. It’s natural to rely on our own strength and resources. There have been times we’ve made decisions or acted without prayer, simply because we fail to recognize that God is there and that He wants us to call on Him.

I’m learning that it takes a humble heart and a mind Aimed at Heaven to consistently be in prayer; making all our requests known to God and calling out to the One who hears.

Make known His deeds among the peoples …. Tell others all about the goodness of God! Glorify Him! This is where my Upward Spiral tends to come tumbling down. It’s hard for me to express what’s going on inside of me. To let others see my gratitude toward God so that their eyes may also be drawn heavenward. To proclaim the excellencies of Him who has called us out of darkness into His marvelous Light! (1 Peter 2:9). To declare the everlasting love of the One who hears our call.

Maybe this is one of the downsides of having a more reserved personality. Or maybe it’s an area in need of maturity. Whatever the case, I know I need to change because God tells us all to declare His name to the world! Just skim through the book of Psalms and you’ll be convinced this is a primary exhortation for all of humanity.

So. Let me tell you about the things God has done in our family in response to our calling out to Him:

  1. Our house sold, again!
  2. We bought a brand new house that’s ready to move in to!
  3. Our kids are transitioning better than we anticipated – they are excited about the changes!
  4. We got a great deal on a commuter car to replace our suburban!
  5. We’ve experienced God’s abundant peace in the midst of uncontrollable circumstances!
  6. God has given us His strength to do what needs to be done!
  7. God has encouraged us tremendously through His people – it’s an amazing thing to know people are praying for you!
  8. Our kids get to continue in the dual language program in our new city!
  9. As stresses pile up, God has continued to teach us about how to prioritize and strengthen our marriage!
  10. We’ve been so lovingly welcomed into our new church!


How will you make known His deeds today?


Oh give thanks to the Lord, call upon His name;

Make known His deeds among the peoples.




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