This morning when I woke up I had that same uneasy feeling on the inside. Stress, worry, anxiety, “no-peace”. I knew how much work I had to do. I’ve got jobs piling up, deadlines, and I felt like I would never have enough time to get it all accomplished. These feelings and thoughts that I was having were not healthy thoughts and I knew that. As I walked out my front door to get some fresh air I looked down and saw a yard ornament that I had purchased years ago that said, “Lose yourself in nature and find peace”. I knew exactly what I had to do. I put on my rounded “explorer” hat, packed a backpack, and took a hike through my woods. It wasn’t that I wanted to procrastinate with my work, I just wanted to clear my mind and get these anxious feelings out of my body.
As I walked through the woods and spent some quality time with God’s creation, I found my inner peace. The deadlines faded away, the anxiety dissipated, and I gained some insight on a better way of living. My message today: work hard, but don’t waste another second worrying!
As I was walking I noticed all of the animals. I saw a few rabbits, squirrels, birds, and plenty of insects. I thought about all of the animals and insects and how they lived their lives. They work hard all day finding food and building nests. They have fun, play, and sing with each other. Do you think that they spend their time worrying? It reminded me of the bible scripture in Matthew (verses 25-27): “That is why I tell you not to worry about everyday life—whether you have enough food and drink, or enough clothes to wear. Isn’t life more than food, and your body more than clothing? Look at the birds. They don’t plant or harvest or store food in barns, for your heavenly Father feeds them. And aren’t you far more valuable to him than they are? Can all your worries add a single moment to your life?
I also thought about how there has always been a lot of work to do. There has always been a deadline. There always will be! Yet somehow I am still here. Somehow I still have these incessant thoughts of anxiety and stress about having to get it all done. Do you have similar thoughts and life patterns?
Here are my goals: simplify my life. Be like the animals and insects: that is to get up, work hard without worry, and rest when the day is over. To laugh, play, and sing some in between. To just live my life and enjoy what God has given me. If the stresses of life get to be too much, I’ll just take a nature walk and regain this clarity over my life.
O.K., I have to get to work. Happy Monday