photo courtesy of Artem Sapegin on Unsplash
My jet-lagged, fogged-over brain woke me at 3:15 a.m. It was confused.
Then my anxiety-driven brain ratcheted it up a notch by going into overdrive with all that needs to be done in the next few weeks as we finish with the group of people we’ve had here for the year.
It was insane.
We just returned from a long trip seven time zones away, and my brain and body have yet to get in sync with each other. It’s frustrating–I’m ready to go at ridiculously early hours of the day when no one else is up, and I’m crashing by 8 at night when everyone is having fun.
This is not a productive time for me.
I need to be productive.
I feel it’s culturally appropriate to drive myself to finish more. There’s a sense that the value of an individual is in the quality and amount of what they produce.
That isn’t true at all. We’re valuable because we’re all made in the image of God. He’s invested Himself in each human being, whether we believe it to be true or not.
Knowing that, however, doesn’t keep me from pushing to do more. There’s the sense that embracing greater accomplishment will increase my worth to others.
That also is not true.
Jesus was never in a panic. He’s never pictured in the Bible picking up His robes and racing to His next appointment. He walked everywhere, and during the walks, He was able to teach and encourage the people who followed Him. He often spoke of not worrying.
“That is why I tell you not to worry about everyday life–whether you have enough food and drink, or enough clothes to wear. Isn’t life more than food, and your body more than clothing? Look at the birds. They don’t plant or harvest or store food in barns, for your heavenly Father feeds them. And aren’t you far more valuable to Him than they are?” Matthew 6:25-26
Worry accomplishes nothing. My dad used to tell me that if it would help, he’d sit with me for fifteen minutes and we could worry together. Double the value of the worry time.
There are many things to be concerned about in the world. Things over which we have no control. These things we can give to God in prayer.
Stress and anxiety wear us down, like sanding our souls until there’s nothing left. But recognizing our worth in God and giving Him our concerns frees us to find true rest in Him.
He invites us to let go of what we were never meant to hold onto.
He cherishes us that much.
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