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Do you ever worry about all the details that just seem to keep adding up out of control?
We’re three weeks away from our first Fall 2015 I AM ART trip to Guatemala … and there are tons of details swirling around us – things like lodging, background checks, flight itineraries, lesson plans, fundraising … trying to prep my brain for communicating in Spanish. I have to admit, I am a planner. I spend a lot of time observing and thinking. I evaluate to make sure things have potential to be the best they can be … and by association, I also worry. I wish it wasn’t true, but unfortunately … it is.
Sometimes worry keeps me up late at night. I know people who can fall asleep seconds after their heads hit the pillow. I wish I was one of those people! There are times that I just can’t seem to turn off my brain. This experience is especially true when I am producing film or music, and I watch or listen to the same thing over and over. I go to bed tired, but only a short while later, I’m wide awake thinking … worrying. It also happens when we’re planning logistics for things like our I AM ART camps. I can feel the adrenaline pumping through my brain as thoughts echo back and forth off my skull. Adrenaline is great when you’re playing a sport, but not so good when trying to fall asleep. If there was an olympic sport for tossing and turning in bed while trying to go to sleep, I’d probably take the Gold.
My alarm woke me this morning after another restless night, and I so wanted to just go back to sleep. “Just a few more hours of rest”, I told myself. I hit snooze … and then the alarm sounded again. I gathered myself, slowly climbed out of bed, woke up my sons, walked downstairs like a zombie, and began making breakfast for my sweet family. A few moments later, my youngest son Elliot walked into the kitchen with a smile. He caught me off guard. I was surprised he made it downstairs so quickly. He’s so much more of a morning person than me … LOL. We shared some laughter. I had a cup of coffee … and BAM … I forgot that I was tired and more importantly, WHY I was tired. But I was quickly reminded.
After breakfast, we read a morning devotion together and I had a major “lightbulb moment”. Today’s verse was Matthew 6:34 –
“Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.”
I realized that I often interpret the verse to mean, “don’t worry about tomorrow today … worry about tomorrow, tomorrow.” But that’s not the truth of the verse. It’s really saying, “don’t worry … period.”
I was familiar with the verse. I’ve heard and read it over and over. I’ve been challenged by it over and over again. I’ve even written songs about it (one of them is below). Why is it so difficult to live out these words of truth??? The answer: because I am human, and I don’t know what tomorrow brings … Because I am not in control. I could blame my current anxieties on the difficulties of running a small non-profit with limited funding. But, if I’m honest with myself, I realize that my worry is rooted in a desire for things to go my way. It’s an issue of will and of trust.
This morning, as I read through this devotion with my children, I realized that I’m often exhausted because I am thinking (aka worrying) about tomorrow. I’m chasing something that I will never obtain – control. In the process, I’m missing the intimate and beautiful details of life that bring joy every day – the morning’s purple glow shifting to orange and blue, the glimmer in my sons’ eyes, the smile of my beautiful wife … the peace I feel when I focus on these gifts, take a deep breath, and accept and trust that God is in control.
Here’s a remake of a song I wrote in 1997 called Crumbling Down about the truth of letting go … “my will is crumbling down, tumbling down, because You are more than I can hope to be …”
 

What do you worry about? What are the gifts each day that bring you joy and peace?

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