Skip to main content

God, I'm making a fly-by!

When we are presented with alternatives to things the purpose is to give us a choice.  We can have peanut butter and jelly, peanut butter and honey, or just peanut butter - based on our "mood" of the day, we choose what comes closest to our desired sandwich.  Alternatives are just a lot of choices.  If you have ever gone into a restaurant with pages and pages of menu items, bound together in a spiral bound book of sorts, you probably have been so frustrated by all the choices you just chose your old "stand by" because you couldn't decide fast enough!  When in doubt, it's a hamburger for me!  The problem with "too many" choices is the increased anxiety a multitude of choices actually affords.  

Don’t fret or worry. Instead of worrying, pray. Let petitions and praises shape your worries into prayers, letting God know your concerns. Before you know it, a sense of God’s wholeness, everything coming together for good, will come and settle you down. It’s wonderful what happens when Christ displaces worry at the center of your life.  (Philippians 4:6-7 MSG)

When the choices are many, the anxiety associated with making the "right" choice is also significantly higher than when the choices are simply this or that.  At least we stand a 50/50 chance of getting our choice right with the latter example, but with the spiral-bound menu of choices, who knows what the odds might be?  There is something to be said about "limiting the choices", isn't there?  With small children, I don't give them a litany of choices - I present one or the other.  Why?  When presented with two items, they want the both - when presented with fifty items, they want them all - but they can only have one!  It is much easier to teach right choices when the options are fewer!  God knows this, too!  So does the enemy of our souls!  He knows presenting us with so many choices which baffle our minds is a good place to get us in the middle of a muddle.  He likes it when we are in a muddle!

Recently, as with each and every winter season which comes, our hospital "business" has increased.  Sickness abounds, people are under the weather, and sick people need the care of seasoned professionals - so they head to the emergency room and soon find their way to our waiting beds.  As the capacity to accept more and more patients begins to lessen due to more demand than beds, we find the stress levels beginning to increase for those of us taking care of those in need of our services.  Why?  Increased demands are just as befuddling to us as are too many choices!  When the demands on our schedules, skills, or services are many, the anxiety associated with these many demands increases, as well.  

If choices and demands can increase our anxiety to fever-pitch, maybe it is time we learn how to collaborate with the only one who can really direct us to the right choice and settle us into a place of inner peace in the midst of the chaos.  Learning to shape our choices and stressors into prayers is fundamental to keeping ourselves out of the middle of the muddle.  So many think prayers have to be these elaborate, well-orchestrated, divine-sounding, stop all activity, get on your knees words lifted to the heavens.  The Lord has heard more "fly-by" prayers from me in my times of increased demand and uncertain choices than I can shake a stick at!  If I waited to get down onto my knees, I'd never get things sorted out!  

All God desires is for us to make our concerns known to him - he doesn't care if it is on the "fly" or on our knees!  He just wants the opportunity to connect. I cannot tell you how many times I have been in the middle of a mess of stress and just asked him to give me guidance - short and sweet.  In a matter of just a short time, he begins to settle in around me with his peace and I can focus on what matters, getting direction on how to proceed and then it seems like the stressors get put into the right perspective.  When things are in the right perspective - or at least I can see them from that perspective - they look a lot less "anxiety-laden" than they did before!  I echo Paul's comments:  "It’s wonderful what happens when Christ displaces worry at the center of your life."

Life happens at a pace we can barely manage sometimes.  In those moments of "over-activity", it is good to re-center, re-connect, and re-commit.  Re-centering means we change our focus from the increasing demand and innumerable choices toward Christ and his leading in those moments.  Re-connecting means we just take a moment or two to just offer up those prayers and then just listen.  We may think we don't have the time to listen, but remember this - the amount of time you invest in listening equates to less time in the midst of the muddle.  Re-committing is really the outcome of the first two - when we get our focus right and allow our hearts to be connected to the one who knows the answers, the ability to make the choice in front of us or deal with the demand which is the most urgent becomes apparent.

It doesn't take much to settle into God's peace - sometimes it only takes a moment to allow the sense of God's wholeness to permeate our inner core and settle us right down.  Just sayin!


Popular posts from this blog

The bobby pin in the electrical socket does what???

Avoidance is the act of staying away from something - usually because it brings some kind of negative effect into your life.  For example, if you are a diabetic, you avoid the intake of high quantities of simple sugars because they bring the negative effect of elevating your blood glucose to unhealthy levels.  If you were like me as a kid, listening to mom and dad tell you the electrical outlets were actually dangerous didn't matter all that much until you put the bobby pin into the tiny slots and felt that jolt of electric current course through your body! At that point, you recognized electricity as having a "dangerous" side to it - it produces negative effects when embraced in a wrong manner.  Both of these are good things, when used correctly.  Sugar has a benefit of producing energy within our cells, but an over-abundance of it will have a bad effect.  Electricity lights our path and keeps us warm on cold nights, but not contained as it should be and it can produce


When someone tells you that you need to wrap your mind around some concept, they are telling you that the subject at hand will take some effort on our part to actually get enough of a hint of it in order to even remotely understand it. The subject is complex, even a little overwhelming, and we will have to apply ourselves to really grasp it very well. We cannot wrap our minds around God's wisdom and knowledge - because it is infinite and our brains are sadly finite. We can only 'think' so far and then we have to 'trust'. Some of us think there is nothing we can trust if we cannot 'think' it through, but this will never work when it comes to our faith. Faith requires trust in what is unseen and not fully comprehended. The truth we believe is really building our trust, but until we approach God with more trust than 'thought', we will never fully grasp some of the things he has prepared for us. We cannot wrap our minds around God’s wisdom and knowledg

Give him the pieces

What or Who is it that causes division among you right now? Maybe it is more of a 'what' than a 'who' that is creating the division between you and something you need in your life. Perhaps you are struggling with an addiction to something that keeps coming between you and true liberty from the hold that thing has on you. Yes, addiction is really the worst kind of enslavement one can imagine - being so emotionally or psychologically attached to the 'thing' that any attempt to break free causes so much trauma in your life that you just cannot imagine being free. But...God is above that addiction - he is stronger than the emotional or psychological pull that thing has in your life. Maybe the dividing force in your life right now is a 'who' - a tough relationship challenge between you and a coworker, a spouse that seems to no longer share your interests or values, or even a relative that doesn't understand some of your choices and now chooses to withdraw