“Scaling the Mountain of Today” is the title given to chapter 8 in Elizabeth George’s Loving God With All Your Mind. We’ve been concentrating on not squandering our time with anxiety, as we eye the days ahead. A problem so many of us have. Seriously, for some of us it isn’t just a problem; it’s an OBSTACLE.
There are many reason we become anxious when we look at the days ahead. Unless you are a visionary type personality, the days ahead seem to loom over us, like mountains in the distance. We get caught up in the sight of it…gazing ahead, not in it’s beauty, as one would gaze at a glorious mountain range in the distance. We see it with eyes wide in fear. “I have to scale THAT mountain?” In reality, God may never take us to that particular mountain to climb. That’s part of the fear. The choice is not ours to make. It’s HIS.
In my own life, I must confess that one of my greatest fears IS that loss of control. I like to have a hand in my life’s decisions. So often, I feel like I do, but do I? Really? Not if I truly believe in the sovereignty of God. Yes, I do have choices to make. I’m not a puppet. But the circumstances that come my way are not chosen by me. They are not even chosen specifically by the enemy. They are allowed, or not, by God.
So let’s re-examine Matthew 6:34. While we are so busy looking at those ominous mountains ahead, shaking in our boots, today is it’s own mountain! We’ve got to climb it first!
Last week I shared the five suggestions given by Mrs. George in Chapter 7 of Loving God With All Your Mind. Today let’s hit them in more detail.
1. Prepare – It is important to prepare for the day ahead so that we are primed when the inevitable interruptions arise. Be careful to consider all your different roles: wife, mother, daughter, employer/employee, etc. Personally, food preparation is one of my biggest issues. I have to create all my dishes from scratch, so being caught with nothing to eat can happen easily. There are also times I have to prepare food for myself that is different from what I prepare for my husband and son. It’s not that difficult to think 24-48 hours in advance, but if you are not in the habit, those interruptions can cause havoc to your day.
2. Plan Ahead – Frequently there are large items on our “to-do” list that we simply cannot accomplish in one day. Rather than avoiding them altogether, we need to tackle a small portion of it each day. Examine your long-range responsibilities as well as what should be on your “to-do” list for today. That might require filling the freezer to prepare for the cold winter months. Growing up with a garden where we canned/froze our summer vegetables…definitely took planning. What did we need? How much? When should it be planted? Harvested? The same would be the case for projects at work, if you are employed outside the home. What about clothes for the kids for next year? You may need to purchas things on sale today that won’t fit for another year.
3. Pray – Just because this is listed at #3, doesn’t mean it can’t go in another slot. We are to pray without ceasing, right? It is important, however, to consciously “give” our day, ourselves, our plans, etc to Him. Of course, they are His anyway, but we can be very possessive! I find it an act of worship, in a way, to pull my hands away, after laying these things at his feet. My family, my plans for the day, HIS plans for my day…acknowledging I am not the one in control. Submission to His perfect will.
4. Proceed – Alright, now MOVE! Step forward in faith and in peace. He will be your guide, step by step. Stay focused on Him throughout the day and He will show you when your plans need to take a turn. He is faithful!
5. Trust God to Provide – This past week we had two winter “events” that pretty much left us home bound. With my father living alone, and twenty minutes away, I was concerned about his needs being met. God was faithful to provide one day between the two ice storms where the roads were passable for me, so I could visit him and make sure he had every thing he needed. God was faithful! I should not have worried. How difficult it is for us to trust Him! And truthfully, if I wasn’t able to get to him, there are people with 4 wheel drive vehicles I could have called on to assist him. They would have been very willing. There was no need for me to worry. Goes to show just how easily we fall into sinful habits.
Dear Reader, we CAN trust God as we walk ahead into the rest of this day, this month, and this year! He promises us in His Word.
I have made a printable file with some verses to encourage you as you go throughout your day. It is black and white so you can add the colors you chose once printed. This is my first downloadable file, so if you have trouble getting it to work, please let me know.