I’m not one to let things go easily. I’m constantly calculating, always second-guessing, criticizing, scrutinising, always trying to be in control, trying to figure things out, always thinking about what the next person thinks…it can be overwhelmingly frustrating.
These past few days, God has been teaching me what it really means to rest in him, what it means to trust him and to rest in his love. It hasn’t been an entirely ‘happy’ experience.
You see, I’m not the kind of girl who likes to rest and by rest, I don’t mean in terms of physical rest but emotionally. I’m always thinking of the next step, things that need to be done, goals that need to be smashed and how quickly time is flying by. I’m always on the move. I mean, my mind is always on the move so much so that I can’t sit still and actually enjoy the moment. It’s a serious problem.
A few days ago while I was having my usual ‘mind-wandering’ episodes, I remembered a video I posted at the beginning of the year on my WhatsApp status about trying to be God. In that video, I had confessed to always trying to play God in my life by trying to control everything. I even advised people to let things go and let God lead. Did I take my advice? Er…not exactly.
The past couple of days have been the most emotionally draining time of my life! I have had repeated bouts of anger and occasional meltdowns all while trying to put up a demeanour of pseudo-peace. It’s exasperating! And I’m being honest here so that you know that I don’t have it all together all the time. The worst part? Despite all of my trying, I still couldn’t control anything! Things still happened to me- things I didn’t expect or prepare for. It took my entire world falling apart to make me realise what my issue was- ANXIETY.
What many people don’t know about anxiety is that it can take different forms. Some people think anxiety is just simply about worrying but it’s actually more than that. In my own case, I soon figured that part of the reason why I always wanted everything figured out was because I was scared of the future, and as much as I said it with my mouth, I didn’t actually believe that I could cast my cares on Jesus. So, it was more like: “Jesus, I’m casting my cares on you, but I will still do my best to work things out for my good in case you have too many cares to handle”. LOL. I know it sounds funny, but it’s true. Many of us are guilty of this.
The thing about trusting Jesus is that we can’t do it in part. We can’t be neutral in our trust. It’s either we trust him or we don’t. Granted, we live in a world where we are being bombarded with things that can spike up our anxiety on a daily basis but the bible still instructs us to trust in God! If we couldn’t, it would not have demanded it. But come to think of it, what other choice do we have? I mean, we’re human. We are limited by our mortality. We are stuck in time. Our vision is limited. Our minds are limited. We are stuck in this realm. Because of our human nature, we are incapable of entirely controlling what plays out in our lives. Think about it. You can’t even see what’s going to happen in the next 2 seconds! It makes sense to put your trust in the One who does.
The bible tells us that God sees the end from the beginning (Is 46:10). Like my Pastor would say: “It’s like a newscaster reading next week’s news today”. How cool is that! Why shouldn’t we trust a God like that? My life has become his integrity to protect. Glory to God!
Now, if we are being honest, I can’t say that I have completely mastered the art of casting all of my cares on Jesus, but I’m learning to day by day. Trusting God and letting him have the reins of my life has brought some emotional stability to my soul and even though I am still in the storm, I take solace in the fact that Jesus is in my boat.
“Who of you by worrying can add a single hour to your life? 26 Since you cannot do this very little thing, why do you worry about the rest?” Luke 12: 25-26 (NIV).
I love how Jesus says ‘this very little thing’ because it shows just how powerless we are in our humanness, and how powerful he is in his deity. He is the one who adds the hours to our lives. We have no hand in that at all! I don’t know about you but being anxious and consequently, trying to control everything NEVER did me any good. Instead, it stole my joy, my peace and my sanity.
So, how about we do something different this time? How about we just take a step of faith and trust God? How about we stop trying to control everything and everyone and just let God take charge. Now, don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying abandon everything we know we ought to be doing and just sit and do nothing; I’m saying we truly rely on God to handle the things that we can’t. I’m saying that we rest in his abilities, and just let him be God in our lives. I’m saying that we accept that we are frail in and of ourselves and let God do what only he can do in our lives.