Some days it seems as if the world is spinning out of control. Terrorism Ebola Sick and dying loved ones Violence abounding It is enough to make not only our hearts break, but our minds and bodies react with fear and anxiety. It feels like too much. Like the waves of chaos are going to totally overwhelm us and we will sink beneath their weight. The only thing we know to do is fight back. And the way we do so is by struggling to find control in any way we can. We don’t fly or travel. We overprotect our loved ones. We compulsively wash our hands. Sometimes this striving for control manifests in ways that don’t even match our fears. Cleaning the house doesn’t save the world but it calms our spirits. We may become very picky about what or where or how much we will eat because what we put into ourselves is at least one thing we can . And this may soothe us for a while, but in the end the anxiety returns. For none of our efforts actually tame the chaos around us. It nips at our heels day after day.
One of the big moves in recovering from anxiety is actually letting go of our need for control.For me this is a spiritual movement. It is a recognition that I am not in fact God. It is a remembering that God is God and I am but a limited mortal. Then I do a wild thing. I surrender my need for control to God. I let God have the reigns of the universe. And then I trust God to actually handle this. Now this is not some magical fantasy that if God is in control then nothing bad will ever happen to me. But it does involve a trust that God will help me face whatever may come in my life, the good and the bad. And I hold onto my belief that even though chaos exists it will never completely overwhelm us. It will be limited and held back so that I will be able to endure it. And in the end, I think that is enough. To endure with God’s help. And remembering that chaos also sometimes leads to creation. And that there is a good and beautiful thing in the world for every fearful or hard one. I leave you this Sunday night with a quote from Job 38:
“Where were you when I laid the foundations of the earth? … On what were its bases sunk, or who laid its cornerstone when the morning stars sang together and all the heavenly beings shouted for joy?”Tonight I am grateful for the morning stars. And that there is one other than me that hung them in the sky and keeps them in their place in the universe. I am grateful I don’t have to worry about keeping the sky from falling for that is not my job. It up to the one who created the dome of the sky in the first place. I wish you a peaceful rest tonight friends. As we lay our heads down, may we also lay down our need for control. May you sleep easy and dream sweet knowing even though we are not always in control, there is One greater than us all who is. ]]>