You remember that song, ‘Don’t Worry, Be Happy!’? When you read the last four verses of Ecclesiastes 11, you’ll think that Solomon himself wrote the lyrics! Verse 9– ‘Be happy…and let your heart give you joy…’ Told you so! Wouldn’t we love to see his wish come true…for us? Be happy…and joyous? ‘To let go…’ and, as we say, ‘…let God’? That’s what I want.
But, to be honest, I think it’s at verse 10 where I face trouble. ‘So then, banish anxiety from your heart and cast off the troubles of the body…’ Oh yeah, right! Easier said than done, old King! Get rid of worry? ‘Cast off’–no return policy in effect! Don’t look back as salty Lot’s wife did? The older I get, the more I realize that anxieties have become a very bad, but familiar, habit. Leaving me deep in a fear-rut. Stuck. Mired. Paralyzed. Only little old me?!
I’ve known many Christians over the years, who seem to focus on their aches and pains, all things negative, harping over past injustices done to them, spinning their wheels going round-and-round with the ‘same old, same old’. Am I looking in the mirror?. Or maybe you are?
I remember being the pastor of a church, where everything came crashing down around me. Being a pastor can be a difficult calling. Sometimes I wish I was deaf when the Lord called me to that church. Maybe I was, and He hadn’t called me there at all. Could be. There came a Sunday, when it looked so bleak, that I decided to walk out the back door and never return. The only other option was to be carried out feet first, and that I would not allow. I prayed. I cried. I left.
Maybe you’re in a difficult place right now. Where you never thought you’d wind up. Seek to ‘banish’ anxiety and ‘cast off’ fears by praying… like you’ve never prayed before. Ask others to pray for you. Those you trust, if there are any. Pray for wisdom, whether to dig in your heels and see it through. Or move on, saying ‘adios’, for God has better things for me! I don’t know which way you should go. I sometimes don’t know in my own life.
Pray for God’s discernment. Then, follow His lead… as best you can. Even not knowing for sure, even when we make major mistakes deserving massive blame, even then God will lead us to brighter days and sunnier climes. Ask for His help. Trust Him… even when it feels like you can only hold onto one of His fingers.
Then wait… for as long as it takes. How long? I have no idea. I’m not God. That’s why we turn to Him. He will see us through. That much I do know…for sure. So, I can be happy and not worry! So can you! But will we?
Prayer: Lord Jesus, thank you for your faithfulness. In your name. Amen.