Saturday, January 15, 2011

Attention Worry Warts and Chronic Stressers: Rejoice!

I’m a professional at messing up.
Seriously, it’s not even funny.

I trip on my own two feet, I run into people, I can’t keep my facts straight, 
I stutter,
I talk without thinking
and I always say the wrong thing.
But worst of all, I sin.
Over and over, I make mistakes.

And when I mess up, I forget to focus on God.
I get frustrated because I can never get it right. And I see a trend with that.
I am always at my lowest when I’m drifting away from God, when I’m stressed and caught up with my life, leaving no time for my daily time with God.

I hate that when my day gets busy,
My time with God, devoted to reading the Bible and praying, is the thing that gets cut out.
I am ashamed of that.
That shouldn’t even be a possibility.
I can do without an A on my next A&P quiz in order to spend time with God.

When I talk to my dad on the phone, he always asks me how things are going.
I tell him about my current stresses brought on by school.
He is glad that I am a devoted student and I don’t settle for less than my best but you know what he always tells me?
In his broken English, he says,
“School and your education are important but they won’t get you into heaven.”

It brings me back to reality and reminds me of what my real purpose in life 
should be.

As I started to read Chapter 2 of “Crazy Love”, 
these exact thoughts were confronted.
(God’s timing for everything is perfect.)

“Rejoice in the Lord always…Do no be anxious about anything.”
Phil. 4:4&6

Chan uses this verse to show us that God does not want us to get consumed by the stresses of this world. He points out that this is a command; this is what God wants us to do. And when we let the world get to us and we focus on our lives, our stresses, and our worries, we are in essence telling God that “our circumstances are more important than God’s command to always rejoice. In other words, that [we] have a “right” to disobey God because of the magnitude of [our] responsibilities.”

He also makes a brilliant point about worry and stress.
I can’t say it any better, so here it is in his words:
“Worry implies that we don’t quite trust that God is big enough, powerful enough, or loving enough to take care of what’s happening in our lives.
Stress says that the things we are involved in are important enough to merit our impatience, our lack of grace toward others, or our tight grip of control.”

I am straight up ashamed to think that my actions convey these thoughts to God when I worry or when I stress.
 After everything He has done for me, this is how I show my “thanks”?

Our lives are short.
You might be thinking, but the life expectancy of the average person is 67.2 years.
Yes, you are correct, but how old are you?
I am 18 and I cannot believe how fast the past 18 years of my life have gone by.
High school flashed by in the blink of an eye
And I don’t know where the first semester of my college experience has gone.
Days seem like hours, weeks like days, and months like weeks.
That’s how fast time flies
And I hate to break it to you, time only goes by faster as we get older.

My point?
If life is short, this should be all the more reason for us to focus on God.
And if life isn’t short enough as it is or if you don’t believe me,
Think about the fact that you could die prematurely.
People die every day, in car accidents, work accidents, freak accidents, and because of health problems.
Who says that that isn’t going to happen to you or me?
We like to believe that that won’t happen to us
And I really hope it doesn’t,
But we need to get over ourselves.
We aren’t invisible and we don’t live forever.
But incase it does happen, I want to make sure I am right with God
And the best way to assure that is to walk with Him each and every day,
To take time out of my “busy” schedule and devote it to him.

And our time with God is much needed.
Because we are fragile and life is unstable,
We need help to get through it all.
We need Him regularly, on a daily basis.

In addition to ourselves, people all over the world are struggling. 
People search for meaning in life. 
In the song, "It's You", Phil Joel sings, 

"It's You that I've been looking for
In worn out faces
Behind closed doors
It's You
I've been looking for

It's You that I've been trying to reach
I spent my money on beautiful things
But it's You
I've been looking for"

People search for something to fulfill them, and that something is God.
 With life being so short, 
We need to make that much more of an effort to share God with others.
You could change a life,
put a smile on someone's face again,
or even give someone a reason to live again.

Living for God,
That gives purpose to life.

I was talking to a friend today about my current struggles,
And she gave me the best advice, which happens to go with all of this 
(and makes a rather good closing statement).
It's short and sweet but
  It reminds me to focus on God among my "hectic" life.

"In the face of fear,
Face God.”

And to go along with that,

“Rejoice in the Lord always…Do not be anxious about anything.”
Phil. 4:4&6


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