“Pray with your eyes on God, not on the difficulties.”
Yep. This is a reminder to myself.
I hate to be a broken record, but here goes… we have lots of transitions going on in our home with one son going to college on the coast, one daughter moving to the mountains, and one son moving to Sweden…all within a 2 week window (which occurs simultaneously with me going back to teaching after a nice long summer. In fact, three of those four things all happen between August 14th and 15th.) So, there are lots of details and checklists to be dealt with. In the midst of it all, we’ve seen lots of answered prayers and doors open and I’m thankful…I really am. But today, I lost sight of the big, for the little.
With all of the good going on, I still found myself this morning just worrying, agitated, fretting…all the things that Psalm 37 (which I have been camping out in this week) says NOT to do, I was definitely doing. Even though I so know better, I just couldn’t get out of this frustrated funk I was in. My to do list was growing instead of getting shorter, because it seemed that each attempt was met with more challenges, almost like clicking on a link on the computer and having it open up three more windows. I had done all I could with some things and was waiting on responses, so my hands were tied and my frustration was just growing.
I finally decided to run some errands so I could check some things off the list, and that’s when it just hit me…there were lots of inconveniences in the day for sure. Lots. But the bigger picture? It made all of these small little things seem so minute. My little list of things bothering me is a reality, but so not significant in the big scheme of things. The inconveniences are just part of life. But how I handle them? That isn’t insignificant or small. It’s pretty big. These little things shape and mold us… Again, gotta give a great Oswald Chambers quote. He said, “The mount is not meant to teach us anything, it is meant to make us something.” It’s as though these little things, the good and the bad and whether we handle them well or terribly,…they shape us, they grow us, they make us. They are not just little insignificant things in our day…they lead us somewhere.
So here’s the thing regarding mountains and molehills. Seeing mountains in the distance with wide open spaces and seeing how big and beautiful they are help us keep perspective. Majestic huge mountains are a reminder to me of how big and beautiful God is. He created mountains…can He not handle my little molehills? And molehills? Molehills are kind of symbolic for me of just feeding on worry. Moles are rarely seen….they quietly burrow, causing destruction in their path. If they aren’t dealt with in a matter of time, they can cause a great deal of damage. So it is with worry. Moles, are like me focusing on the worry, the agitations, the little things that I so can’t control. In the same way that driving up a long mountain road and then catching a view of the incredible skyline of rolling mountains is something I’d prefer to have as my view, looking down at the ground at the ground crumbling underneath me is not where I want my perspective to be. I’d prefer to see mountains instead of molehills in this analogy. (Oh, and you know, when someone is looking down at their feet, others tend to look down to see what they’re looking for… I’d prefer to keep my chin up and eyes out with hopes that wherever my kids land, their focus is not on the molehills in their lives, but on the mountains. )
So, it was a day for me to hit the reset button on my little attitude flying around. Thank goodness I did. The rest of the day has been quite a bit better. I’m trying to focus on God and His provision and things to be thankful for (and there are a thousand)…and praying through the rest. I remember the days of having daily pow-wows with my kids to help with ‘attitude adjustments’, and today, I definitely needed a pow-wow with myself. Thankful for re-starts, new beginnings, and the fact that tomorrow, I get a chance to wake up and start again. And tomorrow, after I read Psalm 37 for the 37th time this week, I think I’ll couple it with Oswald Chambers’ quote: “Pray with your eyes on God, not on the difficulties.”
Photo taken in Toluca, North Carolina…after a storm…July 26, 2015