I still smile and laugh to myself when I remember our youngest girl, Kristine, at the age of 4, telling me that she didn’t want to grow up. When I asked her why not she answered, “I don’t know how to grocery shop. I don’t know how to drive.”
I giggled and said, “It’s okay, when you get older you’ll learn those things. You don’t have to worry about that right now. You’ll know when you get there.”
“Well I don’t want to be a mommy.”
“I don’t know how to take care of babies!”
I think I eventually convinced her that although she didn’t know at the age of 4 what she would need to know 15-20 years down the road it was okay. She wasn’t supposed to. It would come later. I tried to help her see that growing up was fun and good, that she would like it and that it’s just what happens naturally to all of us.
God brought this memory front and center this morning and showed me that I do this all the time; I look waaaay down the road and panic thinking “I don’t know how do those things!” In my heart I try to jump way ahead and figure everything out, I guess so I’ll feel I have some minute amount of control over my life and the outcomes. The “what ifs” pile up into needless anxiety.
I feel like He’s saying to me this morning, “You don’t have to know what to do when and if that time comes because when you get there, you’ll know. I’ll show you. I’ll teach you. Why are you worrying about that now?”
A good friend once likened this mentality to receiving a syllabus in college at the beginning of the semester. When you first look at all that will be required of you, all the papers and projects that will be a part of that class it can be overwhelming. You might think, “Ack! How will I do all of that?” But you don’t do it all at once, you take each assignment as it comes due and when you look back over the semester – you did it all.
Growing up in my relationship with God is a gradual, natural, good thing and I’m glad I don’t have to have it all figured out at this point, on this day. “Glad” isn’t a powerful enough word. It’s more like ecstatic, relieved, thankful, jubilant… “No worries, no freak outs,” I’m telling myself. No need to be afraid. I’ll know when I get there.
“[Jesus said] Can all your worries add a single moment to your life? And if worry can’t accomplish a little thing like that, what’s the use of worrying over bigger things?” Luke 12:25 NLT
“I will instruct you and teach you in the way you should go;
I will counsel you and watch over you.” Psalm 32:8 NIV