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June 13 -- "Worry: Give God a Chance"

It was the day after Easter. A pastor paused for a moment at the top of the steps leading from his church to the busy street, now crowded with people rushing to their jobs. Sitting in her usual place inside a small archway across the street, was an elderly homeless woman. At her feet lay corsages and boutonnieres spread out on newspaper for sale. It was her way of surviving.

The flower lady was smiling as the pastor approached. The pastor picked out a flower and gave her a five dollar bill.

As he put it in his lapel, he said to Hannah, “You look happy this morning.”

“Why not?” Everything is good.” she answered.

She was dressed so shabbily and seemed so very feeble that her reply startled him. “No troubles?” he asked.

“You can’t reach my age and not have troubles,” she replied. “Only it’s like Jesus and Good Friday.”

“How so?” the pastor asked.

“Well, when Jesus was crucified on Good Friday, that was the worst day for the whole world. And when I get troubles, I remember that. Then I think what happened only three days later – Easter and our Lord rising. So when I get troubles, I’ve learned to wait three days and somehow everything gets all right again.”

I want to offer you more than a devotional today, I want to offer you a challenge. I want to ask you to stop worrying. Now I know that might sound like I’m asking a lot from you, maybe even asking something that is impossible, but will you give it a chance?

I certainly don’t claim to be someone who has taken this challenge and mastered it. But, I do know that if we give God our worry, and give God a chance to help and wait a few days, or weeks, sometimes even months (God works on His time, not ours), things do work out, and sometimes it even comes to a glorious conclusion.

One morning last year (October 10th to be exact) I was worrying about something. I went to Ann and told her about my struggle. After I got everything out, she looked at me, and rather than addressing the issue, she said, “Dan, on October 10th of last year what were you worrying about?”

I sat there and tried to think back a year. By her asking me about my worry on that particular day, I figured there had to have been something big happening in my life. With furrowed brow I taxed my brain, but ultimately I couldn’t come up with anything. “I don’t know,” I finally concluded.

“Exactly,” she said and with that, she got up and went into the kitchen to get herself a cup of coffee.

I was left in confusion, wondering how she got paid to be a counselor, having done such a poor job in this situation. That’s when it hit me: I probably was worried about something on that day, but whatever it was, a year later, it was so insignificant that I couldn’t for the life of me remember what it was. At that moment I came to realize Ann might be a better counselor than I thought.

So I offer you this challenge: Go to God in prayer and when the moment is right, imagine yourself taking all of your worries (not some) and placing them in God’s large, gracious hands, and say, “Here God, I’ll give you a chance with them.” Then let the worry go.

Give God a chance, I think you will be pleasantly surprised by the results.

~ God bless, Dan

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