A few years ago, my dad had a health scare. It was the only Sunday I was home between spring semester and summer camp. During the middle of my dad's sermon he said, "I think I'm going to pass out." So he laid down and the nurse and doctor ran forward, and so did I. As his vitals were being taken, the nurse keeping time with her wrist watch said, "We need to get him to the hospital now. He's going into shock." We all rushed to the E.R. and there the nurses began to hook up I.V.'s, take blood and run a myriad of tests. I remember feeling so helpless, but as I remember there is a sterility of emotion. There was nothing to feel, we just had to watch it play out for that first half hour or so.
In the week that followed my dad was put on blood pressure medications and he insisted that I follow through with my plans to be away for the summer. His bluntness of, "Even if I died, you'd have to move on with your life," was his encouragement. To which I replied with, "Oh thanks, dad! How reassuring!" But off to camp I went trying to trust and trying to be faithful.
The first two weeks of camp were just staff. In the midst of training and bonding, there was a lot of work that God was doing on my heart. He was asking me to trust Him with everything, even with my dad's life. Now, if you've read my blogs or know me, you know that I have an awesome dad and love him lots. So being away for the summer, when I could have stayed home and tangibly eased my parents' stress was extremely challenging for me. I found myself in a place of deep and ugly worry. It was all that my mind went to when I was with the Lord.
About a week into the training, I had a phone call with Don Allen, the wise, kind and beloved Director of LB Navs. He was acting as a reference for an internship I was applying for and as we worked out the details, I filled him in on my dad. Our conversation turned and Don, hearing the worry in my voice, reminded me of 1 Peter 5:7, and of course quoted it to me in the NASB, "casting all Your anxiety on Him, because He cares for you." And then Don said something like, "I first memorized that verse as a new believer, part of the T.M.S., but I missed something about this verse for along time until I realized that another T.M.S. verse comes right before it on humility." He then shared verses six and seven together: "Therefore humble yourselves under the mighty right hand of God, that He may exalt you at the proper time, casting all Your anxiety on Him, because He cares for you."
This was the truth I needed to hear. I don't think I would have left my worry had it not been pointed out to me, and ever so graciously I might add, that part of being humble and really trusting in God, was casting my burdens upon Him and resting secure in His care. To do otherwise was to be prideful before God, and in blatant sin before God; for pride breeds sin, as much as it is sin itself. With that wisdom, I was pointed to trust God and walk in humility before Him.
I have often revisited and passed on this lesson in the last four years. And tonight there are two choices before me again. I remind myself that to walk in worry, is to walk in pride and I know that there is a much sweeter place to abide!
Perfect Father, I don't want to worry about tomorrow. It will not add a single day to my life. I will consider the lilies of the field, or rather of the vase on my kitchen table, even Solomon in all his royal robes was not dressed like one of these! And how intricate a lily is--an insanely awesome plant! How much more do You care for me. How much more do You care for Your precious lambs! You would leave the 99 to rescue the one. You would leave Your heavenly throne to put on flesh, to show us true humility, and to pay the penalty for the debt that we could never pay. Surely, You care. Surely, You are good. Surely, the shelter of Your wings is the place where my heart will sing. I choose humility. Spirit, help me walk humbly. Help me to be patient and to trust You in all things for You are good. Your loving kindness is better than life, therefore my lips will praise You!