When I was a kid I got stressed about things. . . . Things like whether or not Danny the bully would finally catch me alone on the playground. Or whether or not anyone would notice the zit on my forehead that was larger than the Empire State Building. Or even big stresses like whether or not Minnie the Tall Blond Girl (not her real name) liked me. And, if she did like me, would we get married? (At age nine finding my life partner was a huge concern.)
To claim that I no longer worry or stress now that I’m an adult would be a lie. Most of my current stress focuses on the worry of not having enough. Not having enough time or not having enough money. Sometimes the worry is that I don’t have enough information about tomorrow. “How will it all work out?” I ask. Ever since Adam and Eve left the Garden where they daily experienced the fullness of God’s presence, mankind has stressed about the unknown. Ironically, eating from the tree of knowledge left Adam and Eve clueless about the future.
This week has been crazy busy. I believe I sometimes make choices that create anxiety. I’m often only as busy as I choose to be. Many mornings this week, I’ve woke up with the nervous question, “How will I get it all done?” Yet, in spite of me, God has always supplied everything I’ve needed. Moment-by-moment, new mercies I’ve seen. Great is His faithfulness in my life and the life of others.
In days of anxiety, I need to relax. To chill out. But just telling myself to calm down isn’t enough. I need to remind myself why I can calm down. I can calm down because God is in control and He is faithful. Hebrews 10:23 reminds me that I can trust God because He has proven Himself trustworthy. Daily peace is a matter of daily perspective. No matter how busy life is, each day should still focus on loving God and serving others.
C. S. Lewis said, “The real problem of the Christian life . . . comes the very moment you wake up each morning. All your wishes and hopes for the day rush at you like wild animals. And the first job each morning consists simply in shoving them all back; in listening to that other voice, taking that other point of view, letting that other larger, stronger, quieter life come flowing in. And so on, all day.” Lord help me to listen to your voice. To take the other point of view. Help me to choose the larger, stronger, quieter life.
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Calvin G. Roso © February 2014