I’ve really been struggling with something that has been wearing on me mentally and emotionally lately…
I’ve been worried about my future, I’ve been worried about my family, and I’ve been worried about my life. And one thing has become completely apparent to me through all this worry, and that’s that…
Worry is a complete and utter waste of time and is a result of lack of trust in God. Worry is more than just a concern about a situation. It’s an irrational obsession over controlling things you can’t control! God says that nothing can be accomplished through worry:
“Who of you by worrying can add a single hour to your life? Since you cannot do this very little thing, why do you worry about the rest?”–Luck 12: 25-26
Worrying accomplishes nothing, yet I still can’t keep myself from doing it! Below are the three main things I’ve been irrationally worrying about lately:
1) My Immediate Family
As many of you have heard, my family is relocating to Florida this summer. This is both an exciting development due to all the amazing things we can do and accomplish in a beautiful place like Florida, but it also brings some sadness. For one, my family will now officially be spread all across the country. My dad, mother, and brother Jackson will be in Florida, my brother Daniel is in Chicago, my brother Tyler will be in California, and my brother Ben is in Columbia. This inevitably means we’ll be seeing each other less for the foreseeable future and brings uncertainty to what our interactions will be like in the future.
2) My Future
Everyone knows that I love working at Liberty High School. I love the students, my colleagues, and the area, and could see myself working here for a very long time. It’s also fairly common knowledge, however, that I’ve been looking to get back into Physical Education for a while now. Unfortunately, with the economy the way it is, there have been few jobs that have opened up, and the ones that have, I’ve been unable to obtain. For the past two years, I’ve been waiting for a job to open here in Liberty, but it just hasn’t happened. I’ve been forced to look at other districts and places, but unfortunately the lack of jobs is not just a “Liberty” thing as there hasn’t been much open up in other districts as well. This has forced me to consider other options and has brought uncertainty to what my career could like going forward.
3) My “Own” Family
Another thing that I’ve been stressing about lately is my desire to start a family of my own someday. Lots of guys my age are dealing with this, so I’m in no way alone here, but the frustration that has come from not being able to meet “Mrs. Right” has been weighing on me more than usual as of late. I remember when I was a kid, I thought I’d be married by the time I was 22. I’m now 26 and haven’t yet met that person who is supposed to be my “better half.” This has forced me to consider what my life might look like if I never meet her someday and has brought uncertainty to what my life could look like in the future.
I don’t say these things for your pity. In fact, I readily admit that worrying about these things is superficial and shallow (especially considering the events of this past week)…
I’m worried because my family is moving to Florida (of all places!)? I should be rejoicing at the thought of the warm beaches, the palm trees, and vacation trips to come!
I’m upset because I can’t get a job teaching Physical Education? I know tons of people who would love to be doing with I’m doing right now (teaching ISS and coaching basketball)!
I’m stressed out because I haven’t met the right girl? Welcome to the club! There’s plenty of great girls out there and you’re only 26! Suck it up ya big baby!
The fact is, however, that I can’t deny my feelings. My human weakness has caused me to stress about these minor things that are of no worry to God. For He knows the plans He has for me (Jeremiah 29:11), and all I need to do to achieve all I’m supposed to achieve is trust and follow Him, and He’ll lead me to where I’m supposed to go.
“Take delight in the Lord and He will give you the desires of your heart.”–Psalm 37: 4
If I can just get myself to focus and delight in God, He tells me that He’ll provide all I need. In fact, He takes it a step further and tells me I’ll obtain the desires of my heart. Now, that doesn’t necessarily mean I’ll be teaching PE or married to a beautiful wife, but it does mean that I’ll obtain all my heart truly desires if I just focus on Him–who controls everything (including what I can’t control)!
The truth is the reason I’m worried about these things is that something isn’t right with my perspective. I’m not focusing on what matters and am instead too focused on myself. I’m valuing my own plans over God’s plans, which will inevitably bring worry 100% of the time. Therefore, for the foreseeable future, I’m going to try and remember the following “inequality:”
God’s Plan > My Plan
God’s plans for my life far exceed whatever “plans” I could come up with for myself. He knows the full extent to what I can accomplish and His goals for me are of eternal significance (as opposed to mine which are self-serving and temporary)! And if God desires that I somehow end up close to my family or that I obtain a job teaching PE or that I find the “girl of my dreams,” then it’ll be sure to happen. And if I don’t, it only means that I have greater, more important things to achieve with my life.
“For God will surely not abandon us on the path in which He guides us.”–David Platt
If you find yourself irrationally worrying over something like I am, I encourage you to focus on this truth as well: that God’s Plan > Your Plan. For God’s plan is far greater and more important than anything you could conceive for yourself! My prayer is that we can all overcome the worry that exists in our lives and begin to fully commit ourselves to God’s plan over our own.