If you have ever researched purchasing a planner, you would find that there are many, many choices. We all seem to be looking for better ways to organize our time and plan out our lives instead of turning to God in prayer. I always have the thought that if I just planned better and scheduled more efficiently, somehow I would find the elusive balance to life that I can never seem to achieve.
So as the new year kicks off and I look at a calendar quickly filling up for myself and my family members, I can also feel my anxiety begin to rise. Choosing a planner is just the first of literally hundreds of choices that face us when it comes to planning. We must decide what time we need to wake up in the morning to fit in time in the Word of God, get some exercise and get our kids each where they need to be for the day. Then we have choices that impact our children’s education, extracurricular activities, our health, our diet, our career, how we spend our evenings, what activities and programs we should be involved in at church, social outings with friends, when to take vacation, what changes to make with insurance…..the list goes on and on and on.
As I began to feel overwhelmed, I was reminded and convicted that the One I call Lord actually cares about all these decisions. Just as I feel the weight of all these decisions, He is ready and more than able to handle helping me bear up under them and make them.
“Cast all your cares on Him because He cares for you.” – 1 Peter 5:7
“Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything; tell God your needs, and don’t forget to thank Him for His answers.” – Philippians 4:6
These are verses I know by heart and understand, but the power in them is not utilized unless I put them into practice.
So, instead of trying to tackle my calendar this week and plan out the next two months and all the transitions and programs that are around the corner, I am going to take time to do what these verses are telling me to do. I’m setting aside time each day to bring my calendars before the Lord and all the things that feel stressful to me and lay them at His feet. Instead of fretting and figuring, I am going to cast those cares on Him. I am going to live like I trust Him and believe what He tells me is true.
Instead of giving in to anxiety, I am going to exhale and tell God my needs. He knows them, but just as we are with our children, it tenders His heart when we come to Him with our needs and desires. We simply have to ask!
And before I step in to my planning,I’m going to thank Him, even ahead of time, for His answers. If I believe what He says, then He certainly will answer me, and I can certainly recount many ways He has proved Himself faithful in my life in the past. So this year, part of my calendaring is going to include a journal of sorts where I will be recording what I’m specifically asking Him for and then a space to record when and how He answers. He will answer, in His timing, and I can’t wait to see at the end of the year the marvelous ways He has answered!
Instead of feeling overwhelmed at the beginning of a new year and all that this season holds, I am able to exhale. I’m able to anticipate what He is going to do and how He is going to handle the things that feel too big for me through prayer.Prayer is me putting into action the things He has told me do through His Word. It’s also another way I show that I trust Him. When I pray about the thing I’m feeling worried about instead of trying to figure out a solution on my own, I’m showing Him that I believe what He says and that He is indeed who He says He is.
Do you find yourself feeling anxious when you look ahead to the new year? How do you think intentionally praying over your calendar might change your perspective?