Two weeks ago our family was able to take a vacation. It has been a long year for us with several changes and this was the first week long break of any kind we had been able to partake in. Last year, before our newest addition Benjamin, we went on a family trip to Gatlinburg. Before we even made it to our cabin we had made an ER visit. Not the ideal beginning to a vacation! Emma had thrush, which itself is simply a wicked wicked thing, and needless to say our vacation became more of an extended doctor's office visit than a real vacation. Not a great week....not a real vacation.
This year I was excited to go again because I just knew it would be different. And it was....sort of. Emma and Ben BOTH ended up sick and the symptoms increased as the week went along. However in the midst of all of the calamity of being new to having two kids instead of one, and the sickness of both of the kids, this was not my biggest distraction. It was myself. My mind. It wouldn't stop running the entire week and it was noticeable to all who accompanied me.
I wasn't lost in attempting to imprint precious, invaluable vacation memories deep into my mind. I wasn't exhausted from having two kids and two sick kids at that. My mind was obsessively latched onto many different thoughts. It was whirling and impossible to gain control of. I was present on the trip however I was an absent minded father on the trip. I was there....I just wasn't really there. I was somewhere else.
I fell into a trap that Jesus warned us of. It was the snare of worry. I was anxious and the Zantac, Pepto, and Maalox were there on the counter to provide evidence. In Luke 12:22-34 Jesus is instructing the disciples about how not to worry in light of what they are experiencing and are soon to experience following Him. They are led not to worry as Jesus reminds them of who they are, and of who He is. I forgot two important things that fed my worry.
They are weak, I am weak.
"And which of you by being anxious can add a single hour to his span of life?[c] 26 If then you are not able to do as small a thing as that, why are you anxious about the rest?"
Adding an hour to our life for Jesus is a SMALL thing. A small thing! We have absolutely no power over it. No amount of stress inducing worry can change even an hour of our lives, and it couldn't fix the problems that so solidly grabbed my attention. Our fixes nothing for it is weakness. It is a lack of faith. We are weak.
Jesus is strong.
"30 For all the nations of the world seek after these things, and your Father knows that you need them. 31 Instead, seek his[e] kingdom, and these things will be added to you. 32 “Fear not, little flock, for it is your Father's good pleasure to give you the kingdom."
I want to fix my own problems. Acknowledging this fact is uncomfortable and that is how I found myself absent from my family. My inability to fix my issues led me to remove myself from all sense of being there. I was humbly reminded that I cannot be my own savior. I need one. I love the verse above that states it is our Father's good pleasure to give us the things the kingdom, the things that we need. He loves being our King, and will allow us to dismantle our own kingdom that we might recall our desperate need for him.
This week, in the midst of you worry, step off the throne. Confess that you aren't a good king and that you can't save the things that your worry seeks conquer. Not a moment of your life. Not even your vacation. Then lean on the true King that takes pleasure in saving, providing, guiding and leading you and fear not.
We are weak. He is strong.