Thursday, April 10, 2014

LISTEN UP

What else, Lord? What else is going to happen?! My mind replays a list of events unfolding in the past few days. The most recent stares back at me as I glance in the mirror, a pool of blood taking residence in my eye. It's a stark and ugly reminder of what stress can do to the body.

There has to be a better way! Honestly, I already know it. At least my mind knows it. But living the truth I know? A whole different thing.

This retraining of the mind and learning to live what I know, it's hard. When circumstances create even more resistance, it feels downright impossible.

"Don't worry." I chant two simple words in my mind over and over. Willing them to sink in and take root. But those two words, they seem to only float around in my thoughts, then evaporate. As though the worries in the moment are too big and powerful to be brought down by just two words.

Until I open to Matthew chapter six. And there it is, plain as day. Don't worry ~ about your life, what to eat, what to wear, or what tomorrow will bring. "Can any of you by worrying add a single hour to your life?" That's Jesus talking! Oh, how I long to do more than just listen up. I want to live these two simple words ~ DON'T WORRY.

It hit me again as I just happened on Luke chapter ten as part of my daily reading. And though the name Martha is written on the page, it's my own name I hear as I continue. "You are worried and upset about many things, but only one thing is needed. Mary has chosen what is better..."

I look out the window over our kitchen sink. Birds are gathered on a feeder, delighting in a meal they didn't worry about preparing. "Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they?"

I've tried, Lord! I wanted to give up worrying for Lent. But I've failed so miserably. Why is this so hard?

"You are worried and upset about many things..." My mind recalls my list, a mile long and ever growing. People, problems, puzzling circumstances ~ all coming together to drive me to that place of worry.

Lord, I'm tired. Then clear as day, I see the remedy for my list. TRUST. How short I fall in trusting you, Lord, even though You've proven time after time to be faithful.

"Only one thing is needed." One thing. My One constant. If I look at everyone and everything on that worry list with His name stamped across it, surely I can learn the better way. Trust. Let go. "Seek first His kingdom, and all these things..." He's already got it covered.

Lord, I see! But how do I change? I've spent a lifetime dancing to the rhythm of worry. "Mary has chosen what is better..." I see, Lord. It's a choice. Daily. Hourly. Moment by moment.

The broken down car in the driveway and bills piling high, they're no match to God our Provider. People I love walking difficult paths, they are safely cupped inside His hands. Daily uncertainties and tough transitions, they are no surprise to Him.

I breathe it in ~ trust, choosing what's better. I exhale ~ worry, stress, and doubt ~ toxic pollutants I was never meant to allow in. Inhale trust, exhale worry. A new rhythm. A new way of life. A choice.

"I tell you, do not worry..." Listen up! But don't just listen. Choose.

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