It is all in there. Your address book. Your favorite recipes and paint colors. Your favorite game to play in carpool line or while waiting at the doctor. Not to mention. Yes, you know it. Everyone in your entire house and life’s calendar. Oh, yes. It is ALL in there. In. Your. Cell. Phone. Kind of scary, isn’t it?
And, then it happens. Just like it happened yesterday to a co-worker. You get locked out. Or, maybe, heaven forbid, you lose it. Or, your battery goes dead and you have no charger. Whatever it is. You just can’t access it. Not. One. Thing.
Has this ever happened to you? If so, you can fully understand why my sweet friend at work seemed so distraught and aggravated.
All day long she worked and worked. Called and called. Sat on hold for eternity. Ran all over town. Just trying to gain access to that wonderful device that holds the keys to the kingdom for most of us.
As I was leaving work, she looked at me with a defeated look. She had tried everything. She was at her wits end. Her kids could not call her. Her friends could not text her. She was at a stand still for the most part. And, I felt so sorry for her. I know that feeling all too well.
It’s the same feeling you have when you misplace something. And, yes, that happens often in my life. What about yours? Sometimes it’s my keys. Sometimes it’s my debit card. Sometimes it’s anything I really need right then. And, yes, often times I get a little freaked out. Trying to retrace my steps. Hoping to find it quickly. Wishing I was a little more responsible.
It really is amazing how one frustrated moment can lead to so many emotions.
As I wished her well in this cell phone process, just one more time, it hit me. So, I asked her. Have you prayed about it as much as you have worried about it?
And, her answer, which is often mine, was no.
“Is anyone among you in trouble? Let them pray.” ~ James 5:13
It doesn’t say BIG trouble. It doesn’t say MAJOR trouble. Just plain ole trouble. That should cover any kind of trouble we may face.
Why is it we fret first and pray later? Are we really wired that way? Do we come into this world with an overwhelming need to get all worked up? I don’t know the answer to these questions, but I do know the only answer to all of our frequent fretting and worrying.
Once, I lost a very valuable bracelet. Not valuable cost wise necessarily, but valuable because of what it meant to me. I wear it almost every day. So, yes, I was heartbroken. I searched and searched. I posted on Facebook. I sent texts to friends from the gym. All to no avail.
That weekend, my husband reminded me that my birthday was coming up and offered to buy me a new one. I explained that as sweet as that was, that I really just wanted my old one back. And, as I went to bed that night, I decided to do the one thing I should have done first.
I decided to just explain to God what He already knew. That I didn’t know where the bracelet was, but I knew He did. And, then I asked Him to help me find it if it was His will. And, no, it really wasn’t that important in the grand scheme of things, but it really was important to me. Not because of its monetary value, but because of all the precious things it reminded me of when I wore it. My husband. My babies. And, sweet memories of days gone by. And, yes, I was afraid I would never find it.
The next day we were up early to head to church by boat. I packed everyone’s swimsuit and such so we could stop for lunch across the lake before heading home. We enjoyed a great sermon and I really had not thought much more about my bracelet. Maybe, finally, I really had given up, or better yet, given it over. To the only One who could make it all alright.
As the boys changed and I reached for the bag of sunscreen, the sunshine caught a slight glimmer in the bottom of the bag. My bracelet!
It had been there since the week before. Not lost. Not gone. Just misplaced. Found only because I finally gave up on my worrying and looking and wondering. And, yes, gave my problem over to the Master problem solver.
“God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble.” ~ Psalms 46:1
Since this ‘nothing short of a miracle’ finding of my bracelet, I have become much quicker to pray before fretting. Not because I am special or more anything other than convinced that He cares about all the things we care about. Little or big. Ok, I confess, I even pray for parking places!
I am grateful that He used the bracelet to remind me that He wants us to come to Him first. And, I would say fret later, but, NO! He doesn’t want us to fret at all. Just trust. Just know. Just believe. That He is in control. He is in the small stuff. And, that He cares for you. Lost bracelet. Busted cell phone. And, all.
It is when we choose to pray and obey He really shows up and often times shows out. The process of ‘choosing’ to obey, especially in the troubled times, is when we are sharing His glory. Not because our troubles go away necessarily, but because we are truly seeking Him in the midst of them.
“For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all.” ~ 2 Corinthians 4:17
Just try it. Next time you are faced with a problem or a worry, pray first. Tell Him you trust Him. Confess that He is all-knowing. Remind Him that you are dependent on Him alone for whatever it is you may face.
In Psalms 107 almost the exact same verse is repeated 4 different times. (v. 6, v. 13, v. 19, v28) Yes, all in one chapter. Do you think maybe the Psalmist wants us to take note?
“Then they cried out to the Lord in their trouble, and he delivered them from their distress.” ~ Psalms 107:6
And, yes, a little while after, my friend prayed. Another co-worker very easily unlocked her busted cell phone. And, yes, the distress that consumed the better part of her day was gone. Oh, happy day!
I know. Not all troubles are as small as a misplaced bracelet or even a busted cell phone. Some are far greater. Far more burdensome. Far more of a reason to distress. But, yes, sweet friends, He can handle those troubles, too.
He is able.
Let’s just try our best to ask first before fretting. He is waiting.