A Catholic Convert in Ottawa

Posts Tagged ‘worries

“How are you?”

I’ve noticed, that, besides the usual “Good, thanks,” or “Not too bad. How about you?” a common answer is “Busy!”

Now, most people are not looking for a litany of our problems when they ask how we’re doing, but it’s sad that “Busy!” has become such a regular and accepted response to the question.

Sometimes life seems to rush by in a flurry of work deadlines, appointments, chores, school events, and worries. We think, “If I can just make it till the weekend or the end of the month or the summer…”

Is that any kind of way to live—wishing the days would go by so that we can take a deep breath—when our lives will be too short for us to accomplish all of our goals or all the good we could do?

I understand feeling that way. For me, it goes something like this: “I’ll like myself more when I’m thinner…If I could just sell the house, that would be one big item off the to-do list…” And I quickly find myself overwhelmed by what’s on my plate.

No, this post is not about chunking, or breaking down our goals into smaller pieces. It’s about pausing for a moment here and there during our day to bring our cares and concerns to God and letting the weight slip off our shoulders and into his hands:

Cast all your anxieties on him, for he cares about you. (1 Peter 5:7*)

It’s about crying to him if we need to and seeking comfort through the Holy Spirit, finding that listening ear we desperately need, and remembering that God has good plans for us (see Jeremiah 29:11).

If we need a little extra motivation, here’s a thought: do we want our children to keep putting off enjoying life until some event happens—to wish their lives away? Or do we want them to see that, despite the curves life throws us, we can still find comfort in God, pleasure in the blessings he gives us, and a deep-rooted joy?

I pray that, if we find ourselves postponing our happiness until some future event unfolds, we would stop to smell the roses, or enjoy cooking dinner, or play with our children, or appreciate whatever other gifts God has blessed us with.

(*Scripture quote taken from the Holy Bible, Revised Standard Version, 2nd Catholic Edition.)

Advertisements

With so much going on right now—including the constant effort to keep my home ready to show potential buyers on short notice and concern for a loved one who started chemo treatments this week—sometimes I forget to just take a breath.

It seems as though my mind and body are busy from the moment my alarm goes off in the morning till the moment I turn off the lamp on my bedside table at night. And if I’m not just thinking about what’s going on, I’m praying about it as I push through my day.

But here’s some food for thought from Psalm 94:18-19*:

When I thought, “My foot slips,”

your mercy, O LORD, held me up.

When the cares of my heart are many,

your consolations cheer my soul.

We can easily get so caught up in our worries and cares and hectic lives that we don’t recognize the reason we can keep going: God, in his mercy, is holding us up and even carrying us when we struggle to go on. And we can miss the joyful moments he sends us to help us soldier on.

This week, my son celebrated his 16th birthday. As we go through a difficult time, I know that he is one of the consolations God has given me, showing more thoughtfulness and maturity than most people would expect of someone his age. And so we took the time to make his birthday special with a homemade card; thoughtfully chosen gifts; a family game of basketball before our dinner that he helped barbecue; more family time; and, of course, a chocolate cake with chocolate icing that I made. It was a joy to press pause on everything else and celebrate my son, who is, as I told him the other day, becoming a wonderful young man of good character.

Maybe we can press pause—not necessarily for a day, but for a few moments—to reflect on our lives and notice the consolations God sends us when we’re struggling: family members who stand behind us, a parish community that supports us, friends who call just when we need someone to listen, the gift of our children who brighten our lives.

And maybe, just maybe, our cares might seem a little easier to bear.

(*Scripture quote taken from the Holy Bible, Revised Standard Version, 2nd Catholic Edition.)

At special times—Thanksgiving, Christmas, Easter, a wedding, the birth of a child—giving thanks seems natural. Surrounded by family and friends, we recognize just how blessed we are.

And then there are the other times—the times when we feel worn down by a tough work week or a family situation or even world events, and gratitude seems out of reach and blessings hard to count.

In Psalm 50:14-15, 23*, we read these words:

“Offer to God a sacrifice of thanksgiving,

and pay your vows to the Most High;

and call upon me in the day of trouble;

I will deliver you, and you shall glorify me.”

 

“He who brings thanksgiving as his sacrifice honors me;

to him who orders his way aright

I will show the salvation of God!”

God knows we go through challenging times, and yet he still calls us to offer “a sacrifice of thanksgiving” and honour him because he promises to hold us up and carry us through it all when we call on him:

Cast your burden on the LORD,

and he will sustain you;

he will never permit

the righteous to be moved. (Psalm 55:22)

Even when we struggle and find it hard to be thankful, we are dear to him and he cares for us and longs for us to share with him what is in our hearts. Even when we feel broken and doubt our own abilities and worth, he never leaves us. He is always faithful, always merciful, always loving—and for that alone, he is always worthy of our praise and our thanks.

I pray that we would take time each day to give thanks for the blessings we’ve enjoyed, such as good health and the love of our family and friends, and the blessings of that day, no matter how small they might seem.

And blessed be Your name

When I’m found in the desert place

Though I walk through the wilderness

Blessed be Your name

~ From “Blessed Be Your Name” by Matt Redman

(*Scripture quotes taken from the Holy Bible, Revised Standard Version, 2nd Catholic Edition.)


Food for Thought

(Y)ou do not know about tomorrow. What is your life? For you are a mist that appears for a little time and then vanishes. Instead you ought to say, “If the Lord wills, we shall live and we shall do this or that.” ~ James 4:14-15

Please enter your email address to follow this blog and receive notifications of new posts by e-mail.

Follow Me on Pinterest

Recent Posts

Archives

8 Kids And A Business

Balancing a large family with a small business, all by God's mercy, grace and providence

roses near running waters

Just a Catholic wife & mama living a life full of wonder

The WordPress.com Blog

The latest news on WordPress.com and the WordPress community.