This morning, I panicked. It hit me that I move in a month and I freaked out. I’m leaving behind the past 4 years of my life. I’m leaving security, I’m leaving friends, I’m leaving a ministry, I’m leaving people who have become like family. What if I am making a huge mistake? What if I am just running away from something truly wonderful? What if I never find what I’m looking for? What if I never find someone else? What if I never get over my ex-wife? What if…?
The thoughts swirled through my mind all morning. I fixated on them. I retreated to my escape and ran for as long as my legs could stand it. It was hot, muggy and there was no breeze. It didn’t work. I returned home and began getting ready for work. I turned on music while I got ready and sang along. It didn’t work. No matter what I did, I couldn’t shake it.
I got to my office and immersed myself in work. I longed for anything to distract me…to take my mind off all the panic and the surging pressure I was feeling on the inside of my body. I started going over details for my last tour with LPYC. It broke me. I lost it. I stopped everything I was doing and simply thought to myself “I can’t take this”. I said it aloud. “I can’t do this”. It was silent in my office for a brief moment. It was then that I heard a voice in my head say, “I know…but you don’t have to take this because I can. And remember that you’re not doing this alone.”
It’s that simple. This is undoubtedly the hardest thing I’ve ever had to do. I’m leaving my life behind. I’m leaving what I thought was a great marriage. I’m leaving the job I thought I would have for a long time. I’m leaving what has become home. I’m leaving a planned future. I’m leaving what I thought was certainty.
What I am not leaving is God. And He isn’t leaving me. I can’t take this. I can’t do this…but this morning as I panicked, as I cried, and as I looked for every possible distraction rather than confront my emotion, I got a much needed reminder that I’m not doing this alone. And while I can’t handle this, God can. In fact, I Peter 5:7-10 directs us to not even attempt to handle our own worries and anxieties but to cast them on God.
It’s easy to get caught up in “what if’s” and it’s even easier to let the worry and bitterness from those questions control our minds. In a recent sermon series, Johnathan Pokluda said something that stuck with me, something I very much needed to hear. He said “Worrying is fear that God will get it wrong and bitterness is believing that He did.” All my thoughts this morning were based on fears that I was making a mistake. Even as I believe that I am following God’s direction for my life, I fear the uncertainty my future now holds and fear can be powerful. I won’t let the fear control me though. Don’t let it control you either. Trust in God and know that whatever comes your way, you’re not doing it alone.