Wednesday, December 19, 2012

In Control

This is the content of my brain over the last few days: new job, sick baby, almost 5 month old baby (!), no more daycare, looking for new daycare, Christmas almost here, shopping, present wrapping, check engine light on, errands, planning time with family, dry cleaning, a week off next week, Newtown, more families hurting, laundry, money, cleaning, need a glass of wine...or a nap...or both.

So much has happened in the last week and a half, it's hard to know where to begin. Lots of changes...some good, some bad. I've come to realize that it's just a matter of accepting where we are right now in this moment in time. Some things are not going to change, despite how much we wish they would. Try as we might, there is no such thing as time travel or a crystal ball.

Driving home last night, I was struck by just how overwhelmed and helpless I felt. Not just for my current circumstances but for those of others in the news and those I know personally that are struggling with illness, loss and other incredibly difficult life circumstances. In the moments, moments that seem so deep and dark, I'm always amazed at what God uses to remind me that NONE of this is in my control and that He is. There was a time not that long ago, that I found that scenario so frustrating. But as these challenges and struggles play out in life,  I find it to be more and more of a comfort knowing that God's got this. So now when God speaks to me in these moments, I know to listen. When suddenly "testing of your faith produces endurance" pops into my mind in the car on the way home, I know to turn to the Bible and dig deeper.

So yesterday evening, I did just that. The words of James 1 jumped off the page at me. The more I read, the more all of those worries and scenarios that were running around in my mind quieted down.

Consider it all joy, my brethren, when you encounter various trials, 3 knowing that the testing of your faith produces endurance. 4 And let endurance have its perfect result, so that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing.

But if any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask of God, who gives to all generously and without reproach, and it will be given to him. 6 But he must ask in faith without any doubting, for the one who doubts is like the surf of the sea, driven and tossed by the wind. 7 For that man ought not to expect that he will receive anything from the Lord, 8 being a double-minded man, unstable in all his ways.....

Blessed is a man who perseveres under trial; for once he has been approved, he will receive the crown of life which the Lord has promised to those who love Him. 13 Let no one say when he is tempted, “I am being tempted by God”; for God cannot be tempted by evil, and He Himself does not tempt anyone....

This you know, my beloved brethren. But everyone must be quick to hear, slow to speak and slow to anger; 20 for the anger of man does not achieve the righteousness of God....

But prove yourselves doers of the word, and not merely hearers who delude themselves....

 Pure and undefiled religion in the sight of our God and Father is this: to visit orphans and widows in their distress, and to keep oneself unstained by the world.

That one chapter brought it full circle. When my brain is full of worry and doubt, bogged down with an array of emotions, I know it's all going to be ok in the end. And if it's not ok, then it's not the end.