We live in a world of distractions, don’t we. We’ve got Facebook and Pandora and Pinterest. We’re so media exposed we’re no longer sure what to do with the quiet. With little thought most of us routinely stuff ear buds into our ears to stream music and turn on the TV the minute we wake up in the morning. We multi-task on our computers, blog, and text message — simultaneously!
Even people who are “spiritually wired” like me struggle with the incessant noise and stream of distractions. But we also know better; we regularly ask ourselves this question: What can I do today to stop for a moment and hear God’s voice?
Each week I meet with a group of friends and we visit over coffee. To say that I look forward to our time together does an injustice to the admiration and deep love I have developed for these women. We traverse this life together, talking about topics near and dear to our hearts. We discuss issues, share life experiences, and pray for one another. We even post information we think will be helpful to each other on a private Facebook page. We laugh a whole lot and cry tears of happiness and sorrow, whenever they hit. We drink a lot of coffee. We talk a lot about what evidence we see that God is at work among us.
I’m particularly close to a couple of these women and we sneak off for additional face time whenever our schedules allow. The story of how God brought my friend Bebe and I together in such an obvious and direct way is a story for another day, but it was a conversation we shared on Wednesday‚ and an insight we contribute to our loving God, that really has us thinking.
Bebe and I are planners. We are forward thinkers. We like to prepare ourselves for conversations and future situations we consider important and want to handle with care and dignity. And as we talked this week about this “life rehearsing” that comes so naturally to us both, we each experienced a real “Ah ha!” moment as I sipped my green tea and she her iced latte with almond milk.
When you spend regular and sustained mental time rehearsing your life, you spend considerable mental and emotional energy on a situation that may never happen. You willingly distract yourself from living in the moment and all those moments can gift you with. You take issues into your own hands and leave God out.
We will never stop being a planners. It’s how God wired us, after all. But our greatest strengths can also be our greatest weaknesses and this week two dear friends, sitting in a coffee house, were gifted with a lesson from God:
I’ll take your worries when you hand them over. Be intentional.
Plan. But don’t work overtime.
For those issues that are not easily solved ... those that hurt your heart ... hand them over to Me.
This will leave room for you to experience My hope and My peace and My wisdom.
Joan Bay Klope can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.