I used to walk at 5:30 in the morning, a time I valued because of quiet, no traffic, and no people.
Walking at 9:00 in the morning is now the same quiet–with more sunlight.
There’s an unusual hush hovering over life now that is both calming and concerning. Calming because people are forced to let go of the busyness of work and doing and step into a new normal of “less than”. Concerning because it brings up new worries–questionable paychecks, missed activities that have defined much of our lives, loneliness.
On this walk, I noticed something I hadn’t considered.
The flowers still bloomed. New leaves still appeared on trees. Grass still grew.
I’ve never seen a panicked flower or tree. It’s hard to imagine a tree so uncomfortable with where it will get its next drink of water that it’s shaking at its very roots. Trembling so hard it’s losing its leaves.
There are dry seasons that affect all growing things. Our back yard right now looks pathetic in its crispiness because we haven’t watered in a while. Rain has been scarce, so the water level is down and plants rely on us to help them out.
These things aren’t life changers. Rain will eventually come and refresh the trees, flowers, and ponds. It will take more than a season of dry to destroy them. Inconvenience and disruption aren’t problems. They’re opportunities to view things in a new light.
We’re all in a season of dry–where life isn’t flowing around us as we’d like, availability of the things we believe we need is limited, people contact is discouraged.
A good friend of mine used a word that describes what many are feeling–cheated. Cheated out of chances to finish things as expected, cheated with lost experiences that may not be able to be repeated–proms, graduations, weddings. Cheated out of hope, a future.
Cheated out of knowing what we can expect of tomorrow.
The truth is none of us is guaranteed a tomorrow. What we have is this moment, today. Planning is good and necessary, but we’re not in control of things that enter our lives and change the trajectory of expectations.
God understands that discomfort. He knows how much we want to control our lives, our circumstances.
He doesn’t want us to panic about what we can’t control. There’s a passage in the Bible that talks about not worrying about life, what we eat or what we wear. Our lives are defined by so much more than that. He points to birds who do nothing to provide for a greater good, but they’re fed. And flowers that do nothing yet are clothed in color and beauty without worry.
We, as God’s highest creation, are of even greater value to Him. If we seek Him first, trust Him for what we need, He will provide those needs.
Try Him. Seek Him with a sincere heart and see if He is faithful.
God is greater than our understanding, more powerful than words we use to try to explain Him.
He puts panic to rest and worry out of its misery.
Because He is.
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