Hot coffee, a load of laundry started, and the day begins.
Two hours too late, but that is neither here nor there. Right?
October has left me feeling as though someone blindfolded me, spun me around eleventy-three times, then released me with an enthusiastic push and a loud, “Go!”
Poor Lydia barely got a birthday, and that pirates party just isn’t going to happen. She hasn’t even gotten her requested cheesecake yet. Or her gift from us.
Sigh again. Mom of the year, right here. Good thing my children are generally gracious and forgiving of me, as long as I’m up front with them. Still, I don’t want to take that for granted. Cheesecake must come this weekend. That is all there is to that.
My lists grow ever-longer in my head, and I feel anxiousness welling up inside, but I beat it down mercilessly with a figurative baseball bat, because I have recently learned that anxiety is a form of atheism. No, really. Think about it.
A dear friend put it to me this way: When we worry, we are imagining and creating a future in our minds where there is no God.
We are seeing that we have no control over our circumstances, and believing that because we do not have any control, no one else does either. We are deliberately forgetting that our Abba Father, who loves us dearly, holds all things in his hands. We have put him out of our minds and disbelieved his promise that he would be with us “even to the end of the age.”
We are forgetting that Everything is Sacred, and All Things matter to him. That not even a sparrow falls without his divine notice. That we are worth more than many sparrows.
Another area where I need to learn to surrender and walk in repentance. Walk in the love and the grace and the mercy that holds me. That will not let me fall.
I am precious to him. How can I ever doubt?
And worse – how do I manage to doubt him, and not even realize it until someone else points it out?
So, what are we supposed to do when we worry? When that anxiety creeps in whispering, “What if?” as sinister music plays in the background? (I totally hear sinister music when I worry. Tell me I’m not the only one…)
We can’t necessarily keep the feeling of worry, or the anxious thoughts from cropping up in our minds. They do that. It’s human nature. Also–we have an enemy who fights dirty. He hits below the belt, hence the need for figurative baseball bats.
Like any other temptation, it’s what we do with those thoughts and feelings when they come that counts. We must take those thoughts captive to Christ. We fall at the foot of the Cross (yes, again–as many times as it takes), and we lay it before Him Who Died. We get honest with God: “God, I am worried. I doubt. I fear. Help me!”
Like Peter, on the choppy waters, we cry, “LORD, save me!”
And guess what? He does. That nail-scarred hand reaches out, and pull us up. “Oh, you of little faith–why do you doubt?” Soft rebuke from Infinite Love, all wrapped up in the God-Man who knows what temptation is like.
So, whatever that looks like for you, do it. For me, I often journal it all, then show it to Him and just ask him to keep reminding me of his love for me. You know what? It doesn’t always erase the worry (that’s wretchedness for you), but it strengthens the foundation of Peace I stand on. It enables me to tap into the fountain of Joy, and drink my fill.
The unknown is still the unknown, but what I know–or rather, Who I know–becomes more intimately known.
It’s good. It’s a good feeling to wield my weapon of choice, and have it come up bloody. To see the enemy flee limping, with his nose broken, if only temporarily. He will be back, but my bat will be ready, dagnabbit.
Okay. Time to move on. This day may have had a late start, but by gum, it’s still going to be a good one, because it’s a Good God who has orchestrated it for me, from before the beginning of time.
He is sovereign. I am not.
But, I am loved.
PS: I am not addressing the clinical disorder of anxiety. That is an entirely different ball of wax. I am ONLY referring to everyday worries that we are all susceptible to. Just to be clear. Though – even the clinical anxiety will have spiritual elements to it. There is nothing in our lives that does not touch that Realm.
How do you take thoughts captive? How do you handle worry?
Grace & Peace,