life is not an emergency

Today for the second time in a week I visited the post office to finalise new passports for our three younger children. I was all ready for the documents to be lodged when the passport officer notified me that some of our signatures weren’t exactly the same, which meant we would have to redo two lots of documents again. On leaving the counter I could feel my stress and irritation levels rising as I thought about having to find time once again to resign and have witnessed the relevant pages.

At this point my daughter who was with me quietly said, “Don’t worry about it Mum. God knows, and if we are meant to be going anywhere He will help you work it out, so calm down and stop stressing about it.”

It was at this moment that I had to decide what I was going to believe. Is it that God is with me, helping to work everything out for my good, or is it that my life and circumstances are just one big emergency where it’s all going to end in stress and disaster?

Many people justify their frenetic crazy schedules and behaviour by believing that life is an emergency! Our actions can signify that we think everything is urgent and life altering, when actually we are the ones who often create the pressure situations we face, as we turn little things into a life emergency.

Perhaps we allow our own unrealistic expectations, obsessive-compulsive behaviours, lack of prayer and time with God, and the failure to remember to maintain balance and have fun while pursuing our goals, to steal our peace, quality of relationships and ability to hear God clearly. We instead turn life into a constant series of dramas, when in actual fact most of what we spend our days stressing and striving over we won’t even remember in twenty years time.

Today, if you are tired of living life like it’s an ongoing emergency, then stop, breathe and realise that life does go on even if the house isn’t spotless before you walk out the door; that everything doesn’t have to be perfect for you to be happy, and that your goals and dreams are meant to bless and inspire you, not constantly burden you under unrealistic schedules and deadlines, which steal your joy.

Most things we think are urgent today, we won’t remember in twenty years time, so ask everyday in the midst of life’s situations, “Is this really that urgent and worth stressing over, and what is God saying for me to do or not do today? Because life will go on even if we mess up, forget something, fail or even suffer loss and disappointment. So let’s take the pressure off and cut ourselves some slack, and know that even when things don’t go to plan it usually doesn’t have to be an emergency.

God has a way through, and all the wisdom, strength and resources we need to experience peace and fulfilment in all we do. He simply wants us to learn to wait and listen so that He can lead and guide us through our day, without the emergency!

“For Jesus is our peace” (Ephesians 2:14)

Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.” (John 14:27)

Prayer: Lord please help me to keep a healthy perspective and know what thing are really important, and where I have the tendency to make things bigger than they are. Please fill me with your peace, rest and the knowledge of your will for me today. In Jesus name Amen.