Firefighters -The need to vent:
Have you ever felt the pressures of life, the job, and stress mounting up to such a point that you felt you were going to explode?
As firefighter’s we know that pressurized cylinders and containers have devices in place to relieve the pressure if it reaches a dangerous level. These PRV’s are there to help alleviate the pressure and bring things back to a manageable level.
What about our own personal need to “alleviate pressure and bring things back to a manageable level?”
What happens when we don’t alleviate the pressures of life in healthy ways and we explode on the ones we love?
What happens when we don’t alleviate the pressures of life and say things we shouldn’t to others in person or on social media?
Is it fair to our loved ones that “our stressors” have now caused collateral damage to their lives?
Let us consider a new relief valve: A prayer relief valve.
“Let go of anger and leave rage behind! Don’t get upset—it will only lead to evil”(Psalms 37:8 CEB)
But how do we vent in a healthy way?
Where can we go?
Who can we talk to?
As firefighters, we do everything together yet we seem to forget that we are not meant to carry these burdens alone.
1) There is strength is numbers:
From the very beginning, each of us should seek out a group that we may confide in. They should be a frequent number on our call list.
“Two are better than one because they have a good return for their labor. For if either of them falls, the one will lift up his companion.” Ecclesiastes 4:9
Let us learn to turn to God and to our group so we can vent in healthy ways instead of blowing up on others.
2) Lift each other up:
“But woe to the one who falls when there is not another to lift him up.” (Ecclesiastes 4:9, 10 NASB)
Too often we think that we must provide the answers for the troubles that our friends and loved ones face. This is a great failure on our part.
Our role is to show up, shut up, and lift up. It is God who ultimately provides the answers and healing. It is our role to be the “hands and feet of Christ” which means to physically show up in the lives of those who are hurting around us.
In closing, we all need someone to vent to. It takes a true friend to let us unload our burdens without thinking we are aiming our frustrations at them. It takes a true friend to tell us what we need to hear and not what we want to hear in those moments.
Let’s step up and be that friend to a hurting brother or sister today!
You may be the answer to their prayer.
Andy J. Starnes
Bringing Back Brotherhood