It used to be so much easier to do it all.
Back then, you could handle the kids, the carpet stains, the many work projects, the constant calls from family and friends and the occasional telemarketer. Looking back, you're not sure how you did it.
When I feel like this—overwhelmed by all of the commitment, chores, and obligations I've taken upon myself—I think of myself as Wile E Coyote from the Looney Tunes cartoon. Wile E Coyote, intent on capturing Roadrunner, his nemesis, often darts after his prize without any thought of where he's going. He runs and lunges and chases the Roadrunner with confidence and singular intent—until he realizes that he's run off a cliff and is hanging in mid-air. Suddenly aware of the insanity of his position—a wingless coyote dangling in the clouds above a rocky cavern—he loses his confidence and plummets to the ground.
It's easy to ignore mounting stress and obligations when you're like Wile E Coyote, rushing through your day without taking the time to see you're running in mid-air. It’s tempting to chase goals at the expense of your health and your family. It may even seem natural to sprint headlong into your long list of impossible duties and goals until you crash.
But there is a better way. In the Bible, Jesus tells us, "If you are tired from carrying heavy burdens, come to me and I will give you rest" (Matthew 11:28, CEV). If you're feeling anxious and overwhelmed by the mounting chaos of life, you can bring your worries to God.
Although it may seem impossible or impractical to stop moving and to silence your crowded mind, it is in those quiet moments with God where you can find the strength to refocus and face the rest of your day. So, while it may feel counterintuitive, consider taking a few moments to look away from your calendar, sit still, and pray these words with me:
Lord, I'm overwhelmed by my long list of goals and obligations. It all feels like too much to me. Help me to focus on you and nothing else in this moment.
Don't worry about anything, but pray about everything. With thankful hearts offer up your prayers and
requests to God. Then, because you belong to Christ Jesus, God will bless you with peace that no one can
understand. And this peace will control the way you think and feel. (Philippians 4:6-7 CEV)
It's so easy for me to be so focused on my goals and obligations that I forget what truly matters. Help me to move past all the noise of my chaotic day and to hear what you have for me in your Word.
Lord, are my shepherd.
I will never be in need.
You let me rest in fields
of green grass.
You lead me to streams
of peaceful water,
and you refresh my life. (Psalm 23:1-3 CEV)
God, thank you for showing me how to rest and refocus my priorities amidst the overwhelm. Please help me to remember what truly matters when daily stressors cloud my mind. Remind me that you love me and are in control. Amen.
I give you peace, the kind of peace that only I can give. It isn't like the peace that this world can give.
So don't be worried or afraid. (John 14:27 CEV)
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