Grace for the Moment

Meet my four best friends ... Fear, Worry, Anxiety, and Stress. They have been my closest companions since childhood, and I remember exact moments in my life when I met my friends.

Let's see ... I met Fear at the early age of 6 right after my family moved to Grenada. We were living in our rental house on Carroll Street which was already a creepy house as it was, but shortly after we moved in, my brother decided it was a good idea to make me watch Chucky a.k.a. Child's Play. This is the first time I remember becoming so close to my friend, Fear, and unfortunately, he has clung to my side ever since. He followed me into my adolescence, my preteen and teen years, and even into my young adulthood. He still likes to linger around corners, and he never seems to get tired of hanging around me.

I met Worry quite a few times before this one particular moment, but the first time Worry and I became friends was in 8th grade when my parents told me that my mom was having tests run to confirm their suspicions of colon cancer or Crohn's disease. Worry accompanied me into one of the worst encounters of my life. Worry held my hand and reminded me to dwell on every worst case scenario possible. He helped me underestimate God, and in these horrifying days and weeks, we began a friendship that has grown stronger through the years.

Anxiety was an unwelcome friend around the same time as Worry, but Anxiety really caught me off guard. I was in junior high, and the time was approaching for my first Cotillion (which is a club I was in where the girls/members have to ask guys to be their dates 2 times a year). I only got in because my sister had gotten in, and had I known it would be the start of my new friendship with Anxiety, I might've declined it all together. This is when Anxiety began to whisper in my ear that I wasn't pretty enough, skinny enough, popular enough, or even good enough for a guy to want be my date. Anxiety knew the exact tactics to consume me.

Finally, there is my friend Stress who was and is the one who causes me the most trouble in my college years. I don't think Stress and I were very close until I graduated high school. Since then, Stress has marred almost every decision, test, and change that has come my way over the past 4 1/2 years. Stress told me that our friendship was normal and that all college students were this close. He told me that as long as I kept him close that I would be one step closer to accomplishing everything on my task list. He made me think that procrastination was actually a good idea. He has been my constant companion for far too long.

Anyway, now that I've introduced you to all of my friends, it is time for me to finally sever ties. I have held on to Fear, Worry, Anxiety, and Stress because I wasn't placing my trust in the right place. It was easier (at the time) to turn to them in all situations than to turn to God.

In Max Lucado's book "Traveling Light," he says "God isn't going to let you see the distant scene either. So you might as well quit looking for it. He promises a lamp unto our feet, not a crystal ball into the future. We do not need to know what will happen tomorrow. We only need to know he leads us and 'we will find grace to help us when we need it'(Heb. 4:16 NLT)."

Satan keeps attacking me with the "what ifs" about school, work, my nonexistent love life, and the list goes on. Over the summer, just thinking about grad school made me want to throw up, and I've already expressed my feelings about my single life. I can so easily get caught up in my same ole friends Fear, Worry, Anxiety, and Stress, OR I can choose to follow this ... "Meet today's problems with today's strength. Don't start tackling tomorrow's problems until tomorrow. You do not have tomorrow's strength yet. You simply have enough for today." (Matthew 6:34 speaks for itself on this matter)

I am trusting that God will give me grace for the moment. I know I will be tempted to reunite with these old friends, but life is so much easier when I rely on God to give me His grace which will help me through it all. I just love the idea of God giving me His grace each and every moment. It sounds like a much more pleasant experience than good ole Fear, Worry, Anxiety, and Stress.

So long, my friends ... I'm loving God's grace for the moment way too much to even take a glimpse back over my shoulder. This is how it is supposed to be. Sweet surrender.

Learning to love,