A few months ago, my Mom, sister, and I attended a lady’s retreat that our Church put on. The topic was fear & anxiety, and in one of our small groups, we were supposed to write down and share our fears. It was there that I realized something that I hadn’t addressed before: my hidden, but greatest fear: dying young. I fear not getting married, not having children, etc.-just in general, dying too soon to have all my dreams and desires realized.
I thought about this fear off and on all the rest of 2016, but it wasn’t until 2017 that something clicked. I was browsing through Spotify for new music to add to my playlist, when I stumbled upon American Authors and their song: Born to Run. The lyric in their chorus really struck me: I’m gonna live my life like I’m gonna die young… Hearing those words resonated deeply with me, and I felt like I knew the resolution to my fear. Namely, looking that fear in the eye and embracing it. Embracing the fact that I have no control over my life, whether I live or die tomorrow, so I might as well live today as my last.
Along these same lines, I was blessed to have been going through “Table in the Mist”, a study on the book of Ecclesiastes. It was while reading this book that the truth I mentioned above really hit home, and I began embracing it, praying it, and, by God’s grace, attempting to live it. Ecclesiastes 3:11-13 encapsulates perfectly what I’m talking about:
“He has made everything beautiful in its time. Also He has put eternity in their hearts, except that no one can find out the work that God does from beginning to end. I know that nothing is better for them than to rejoice, and to do good in their lives, and also that every man should eat and drink and enjoy the good of all his labor—it is the gift of God.” Ecclesiastes 3:11-13 NKJV
I am not to know what tomorrow brings. The Lord has placed the desire to know what will happen from tomorrow to eternity in my heart, but I will never find it out. So why worry about it? Why fear tomorrow, when I have good work, good food, good drink – a good life –to live today? Why worry when He has made everything beautiful in its time?
Now, I’m not embracing the trendy “YOLO” idea, throwing everything out the window and diving head first into reckless actions just because I might not get to do it tomorrow. There is still a place for patience, discretion, and self-control in all things. Still too, there is a place for planning and dreaming. But, my problem is that I’ve been doing so much planning and dreaming, that I have forgotten the work that I can get done today, and the gifts that I’ve been given today.
So, in short, what is my resolution? To live each day to its fullest, and not worry about tomorrow. As Jesus said:
“Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about its own things. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble.” Matthew 6:34 NKJV
The liberty found in this truth is indeed profound, but letting go of my sinful, controlling nature is the battle I must win in order to taste such freedom. But, by the strength I find in my Savior, I have resolved to really discover what living out these passages mean. 2017 looks like a big year for me, by God’s grace: I am becoming an adult, I hope to get my drivers license, launching a dream that I have been hiding in my back pocket for years… also, I will be of age for serious relationships. So, I’m thankful that the Lord saw fit to reveal this truth to me, and strengthened me to truly pursue it in a year where I know I will be facing many trials, heart breaks, and difficult situations.
SO HERE’S TO FACING OUR FEARS AND LIVING LIFE TO THE FULLEST!
What is your 2017 resolution(s)?
-Charlotte, the youngest sister