Wednesday, April 23, 2008

"Do Not Worry"

My religion and my faith are things that I typically keep close to my heart. I don’t feel the need to advertise to the world how I worship or what I believe. I will, on occasion, write about my relationship with God and things that I’ve been thinking about. Today is one of those days. It started this morning when I checked my e-mail—I receive sort of a “daily support” type message everyday and I always find them to be uplifting. Today’s scripture really jumped out at me.

Jesus admonishes you to not worry because He will provide everything you need: "Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat; or about your body, what you will wear. Life is more than food, and the body more than clothes. Consider the ravens: They do not sow or reap, they have no storeroom or barn; yet God feeds them. And how much more valuable you are than birds! Who of you by worrying can add a single hour to his life?" (Luke 12:22-25).

The last sentence really struck me. “Who of you by worrying can add a single hour to his life?”

It sort of drives home the point that worrying doesn’t get us anywhere. Of course, I’m trying to convince myself of that even as I type this, worrying about all I need to get done today and wondering if I’ll have everything in order this weekend for my family while I’m out of town. What if I forget something when I pack? Will my husband remember to do the household stuff while I’m gone? Will he give our daughter good, healthy meals, or will he indulge her and let her eat too much junk food while I’m gone? Will my daughter miss me and not want to go to bed at night? Or will she not even realize I’m gone and just have fun with her daddy? Will the planes I’ll be flying on be delayed or cancelled? What if they crash? Will I be able to relax enough to have fun? What if I have so much fun that I’ll be sad I’m not staying with my sister longer? It’s all the “wills” and “what ifs”. Too many.

In the long run, it doesn’t really matter, does it? It just is what it is. Things work out or they don’t. Life happens and I can participate and enjoy it as much as I can, or I can sit on the sidelines, burdened by those “what ifs” and watch things go on around me. As I’m getting older, I’m finding that I’m more comfortable with myself and the circumstances of my life. I’m never going to be skinny and that’s okay. I’m a homebody in my daily life, but if I had the chance to travel the world, I’d do it in a heartbeat—with or without my husband! Until this morning when my husband unknowingly reminded me, I forgot that tomorrow is an “anniversary” of sorts—something that for the past few years has grated on my soul and left me with the bitter taste of resentment burning in my throat. This year, I feel only slightly annoyed. I’m grateful and relieved that the anger (rage, really) that used to be bubbling just below the surface is now cooling on a back burner. That brings a wonderful, settling feeling of peace.

I’m not sure if it was a conscious decision to turn over that issue to God—I don’t remember actively thinking, “Let go and let God” or “His will, not mine.” I just know that at some point, God took that burden from me. Or perhaps more correctly, I finally let the worry go and opened myself enough to let Him take it from me. And for me, the biggest control freak of the universe, that is a BIG deal. Letting go of something—especially if it’s something that hurt—is no small task. But there is no task, big or small, that God can’t or won’t take. He’ll take it because he can take it. He’s stronger than me. He’s bigger and badder (and I mean “badder” in the best way possible) than anything that will cross my path. I’m not always good at remembering that, but I’m working on doing better.

I can’t add an hour to my life by worrying about anything. All worrying does is waste time and I hate being a time waster! So, in an effort to worry less, I’m going to pack my bag tonight for my upcoming trip and remind myself that other than my medication, I can buy whatever I forget to pack. There are stores where I’m going, right? No big deal. And if my little munchkin gets a little more junk food than usual, it’s okay. I’m not the one who will be up all night with her tummy ache. She’ll miss me some and be glad when I’m home (as will my husband). The planes most likely are not going to crash. It will be a safe, smooth flight, both ways. I will have fun. I will appreciate coming home to my family. And I can’t wait!

1 comment:

Margaret said...

I forgot to pack my gym shoes and we got locked in a cemetery when I went to DC. You'll have a great time!