Just Keep Swimming

Just Keep Swimming

“So do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will bring worries of its own. Today’s trouble is enough for today.” – Matthew 6:34

Has anyone ever accused you of being a “worry wart”? Or do you know anyone who walks into any situation and cannot conceive of a way in which it could end well? If that is you or someone you know, the above verse from the Gospel of Matthew is for you.

As human beings, we have the uncanny ability to “borrow trouble.” That is, we can add all sorts of difficulty to a situation merely by conjuring it with our thoughts.

For instance, the other night as Michaela was warming up for her first ever swim meet, I began to play out the scenarios in my head. The chances of her losing or begin disqualified, and how she would react, and how I would react to that reaction, and trying to figure out what the best moves were to make to mitigate her being upset with herself for not being perfect. I am pretty sure, if I had checked my blood pressure that hour before the start of the meet, it would have been sky high.

Then I found out, about 5 minutes before the start of the meet, that she would be swimming three races instead of one – and two of them were strokes she had never really done before. I am certain everyone in the place could see the veins popping out on my neck and forehead. I paced and I worried and I worked out the problems in my head and resigned myself to having to salve her wounded soul with a Happy Meal and some ice cream.

And then the whistle blew, and she dove in the water for her first race (one of the hardest strokes, one she had never really practiced) and she did fine. She wasn’t first, but she wasn’t last, and she got out of the pool proud of herself for doing it (not nearly as proud as her papa, though).

We put ourselves through unnecessary grief when we try to predict and prepare for every possible future catastrophe. We add stress and anxiety to our lives that don’t need to be there and don’t make the situation any better. I got worked up because of the thought of what could go wrong, instead of enjoying the moment trusting in all that could go right.

Planning for the future is important. Worrying about it to the point of inaction or losing the enjoyment of this beautiful life we have been given isn’t. During the course of our lives, a lot of bad things will happen, some truly tragic, others not nearly as bad as we played it out to be in our minds. But for the most part, we won’t know we are in them until we are in them and at that point we will hopefully realize that the day already has enough trouble and leave tomorrow’s alone.

Swimming for the surface,

Pastor Mike

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