The sun is shining brightly on the cold white snow and a new year has begun. I’ve been quiet for awhile as much has gone on in my life that required my full attention. So much that I have experienced and am contemplating I would love to share with you. I would like to hear what you think, what you are learning. There are several things on my mind, too much for one post for sure. So I’m just going to begin and these year end, year beginning thoughts will go on for a few days. I truly desire to hear what you are thinking about as well so please, join in the “conversation.”
Over the past year it has become apparent to me on a new level how much fear plays into our lives. Over this past year our small group has been working through the book, “Love Focused”. You can check it out here: Love Focused Website I mentioned it once before but this quote really “hit me.” Trying to control people and circumstances prevents us from achieving the two most important assignments God has for us; to love him and love others. As a result, striving for control is one of the most likely things that will prevent us from being the person God wants us to be.” pg. 104 “Love Foucused” by Ben and Judy Hughes. I discovered this pearl of wisdom just as I was stewing in anxiety over our family Christmas plans. You see this year was our year to have both of our kids with us. They spend every other year with us, alternating with their in-laws. Traditionally we would have our immediate family Christmas on the evening of the 23rd with a big breakfast and lazy morning on the 24th. That afternoon we would travel to my parents spending the evening with them. That would include a sit down dinner and time for presents. We all stay overnight at my parents rising on the 25th to go to my husband’s parents home for the day. This year we needed to incorporate my mother in the nursing home Alzheimer’s unit, a first for us. If that wasn’t enough, the church we are currently serving at (45 minutes from my parent’s home) had a 6:00 Christmas Eve service, right at supper time. My mind went wild with thoughts of inconvenience and probable dislike from various members of my family. How could I make everybody happy, honor my Mom and fulfill our obligation to the church all at the same time? Round and round the thoughts went in my mind. I played a variety of scenarios, none of them really working to my satisfaction. Finally I spilled my guts to the Lord and to my husband. I wrote an e-mail to all of my family reviewing the various parts of our Christmas plans and “releasing” them from “having” to do all/any of them. I told them that we would be planning to see Mom in the afternoon and then would have to leave to go to the Church to prepare for the service and would return home when it was done. They were welcome to join us if they liked but realizing it happened right through the dinner hour they could stay at my parent’s home and have dinner. We would join them later. I made it as plain as I could that I would not take offense no matter what they chose to do. In other words, I gave it up. I couldn’t control it anyway, no matter how hard I tried, so I gave it up.
Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you.” I Peter 5:7 (NIV)
(Cast) The term is often used to describe hoisting a burden onto the back of an animal. Yet it also carries with it the notion of throwing, as casting a stone. When I come before the Lord, he doesn’t simply bid me to lay my troubles down. He instructs me to throw them. That way, they are out of my hands for sure. (emphasis mine) “Daring to Dance With God” by Jeff Walling You can find this book here: Daring to Dance with God
I did it. I “pitched” this anxiety to God and ran away. Honestly, I ran away and barely looked back. Nearly immediately our daughter-in-law zipped off an e-mail to us stating that she was “up for anything.” My brother called within the hour of receiving the e-mail asking “what’s up?” He stated that we had told them some time ago that we had a church service to attend to and that they were planning on coming. That matter was settled, at least for awhile.
Is there something that you could “cast” away to God right now? Little, big, the size doesn’t matter if it is distracting you from enjoying your life. Why don’t you take moment. Look at that thing in your hand and then throw it away, throw it to God. There it’s out of your hands. Leave a comment to denote this action. Writing it down or declaring to someone that you did this gives you a point to refer to when you are contemplating picking it back up. I’d love to encourage you to leave it with God.