In almost 30 years of being a priest, the phrase I hear most often from fellow Christians is, “I can’t.” I can hear defeat or resignation in it. Most often, this response stems from two situations. The first is when a person seeks me out because she is in a tough situation. The second is right after I encourage fellow followers of Christ to deepen their relationship with God by being more regular in worship or by bringing their children to Christian Formation (and going themselves.)
I can’t. I am too busy. Too tired. Too stressed.
No doubt we are. Our world believes in the 25 hour day. It believes in the how-many-trophies-can-you-pile-up life. It holds true that worry changes things. It demands that we keep up with our neighbor’s frenetic pace.
Here is where it pays to have a North Star, a guiding light. If I let God set my agenda, I will never be crushed by the day or the demands. My spirit always will sing.
Stay close to God today. Move closer still. Everything else with take care of itself. God wants us in a relationship and out of that relationship pours life.
Surrender. But surrender to God.
Therefore, my beloved, just as you have always obeyed me, not only in my presence, but much more now in my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling; for it is God who is at work in you, enabling you both to will and to work for his good pleasure.
Philippians 2:12-30 (NRSV)