Originally published Monday, 22 June 2015.
When I saw it, I immediately knew something was wrong.
The A, B, Cs where there. I was anxious, burdened and out-of-control as I cast my eyes on what was asymmetrical, border-weird and color not-normal.
My days of laughs in the sun,
felt like they were being exchanged for tears at the mirror
as I looked at my back from every angle known by man.
The possibility of cancer, the pain of removal and the fear how long it had been there swung like a wrecking ball in my chest. Whatever was resurrected for Jesus, was all broken today.
Have you ever noticed that,
a heart that dwells on the looming possibilities of fear,
tumbles down the great possibilities of God?
It’s a pack-up-your bags, furious move from residing under the shadow of God’s wing to living in a battle-soaked village of doom and gloom.
The more I looked at that mole, the more I knew I had to do something. So, I picked at it. Then, I started to rub. With no progress, I grabbed the great tool of exfoliating cream and dug into it.
This thing was coming off!
I rubbed some more…
Until all that remained was the bloodied marker of all that was threatening me
and an open sore filled with discouragement and embarrassment.
That’s how it is with worry, isn’t it?
The more we move the chair of our thoughts back and forth over that same spot,
the more we dig deep tracks of distrust into our heart.
We rub, and rub and rub – the same spot.
The more we dig deep these tracks of distrust,
the more we follow these ill-conceived tracks to illogical solutions.
We rub with exfoliating cream.
We ruin the floor of our faith with the imaginations of our future. We take action to things only God had the best action for. What ruminates in our mind, dominates in our life.
Then we ask:
God, where are you?
God, why did you let this happen?
God, do you not care?
God, are you going to let _____ happen?
It’s like we allow our all-powerful problems
convict our seemingly low-power god –
a god who is entirely lacking in the love department.
We get squinty-eyed at the one who loves us most. We do what we don’t want to do.
God, return my heart and my presence back to you. I am sorry.
Confession is the flashlight to clarity.
Worry doesn’t stop what destroys, it just steals joy.
Worry self-centers us. People, needs and ministry move to the outskirts.
Worry erases the idea that we are living for God’s glory, his plan and his will.
It makes invisible the prayer, “Thy Will be done.”
Worry is like a bouncy ball stuck in a box, it will keep you up all night and get you nowhere.
Worry places our eyes on our present problems, rather than our present God.
What do I really believe?
Do I believe God is an all-sufficient problem handler or
do I believe that he is absent, I am all alone, in the woods, by myself, fending against all my worst fears by the strength of my own might?
Is God the warrior or am I?
The truth is: God has us, he won’t let us go, he has a plan, he will bring us through all pain, he will provide for our every need, he will not forsake us, he will never let us go, he will not let our foot slip, he will pick us up if we fall, he will guide us through suffering as he has suffered, he will bring glory to our pain, he will lead others to know him through our trials.
But the real question is, do I believe this deep down -where it counts?
Hearts that believe God is good, give thanks for their good God.
Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. Phil. 4:6
Thanks breathes in God and exhales bitterness.
Thanks makes us see all we have versus all we could lose.
Thanks brings into remembrance all of his past faithfulness.
Thanks puts into perspective our present perspective.
And the peace of God, which surpasses all comprehension, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. Phil 4:7
What can you find to be thankful for?
What praise can you immerse your one-track mind in
so that you don’t rub yourself raw
with feelings of God-has-left-me?
Read our guide for How to Stop Worrying: 13 Practical Steps and start taking small steps today toward living fully free from anxieties.