episode 8

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Today I’m talking about one of my favorite bible verses.  I use these two verses when I’m feeling down and stuck in a rut.  And that’s how it usually works with me.  One or two bad choices leads me to making more bad choices.  Kind of a “well I already blew it, so who cares” kind of attitude.  And as I spiral down, I feel worse and worse about myself. And when I’m struggling to get myself out of this run, out of feeling like I’m covered in slime, I grab onto these verses.

But seek first the kingdom [of God] and his righteousness,[s] and all these things will be given you besides. Do not worry about tomorrow; tomorrow will take care of itself. Sufficient for a day is its own evil.” Matthew 6:33-34 

This verse has the power to save me from my bad mood, my downward spiral and to pull me up.  I focus on three specific aspects.

Seek first the kingdom of God.

You know I mention this all the time.  We have to start our day out with God.  We have to give him those first few minutes before we let our feet hit the floor and we let the day smack into us.  It took me a good year to make this a habit in my life and the habit still gets knocked around a bit when big life changes happen (i.e. new baby, death in the family, out-of-state move etc.)  But when I’m feeling out of sorts, I know this is the first place I have to look.If I’m not aligning myself with Jesus in the morning, my whole day gets off kilter.

Sometimes I read the morning offering, sometimes I read my bible or say a rosary, sometimes I just lay there and pray my desperate heart out to the Lord.Do you start your day off with Jesus or do you leave him in the background until something goes wrong? If you’re feeling like your life doesn’t have much peace these days, maybe you need to put the Lord in your morning routine.  Start off the day by giving the day to Him and then let Him guide you.  It certainly doesn’t mean things won’t go wrong but you’ll feel like He’s right there by your side if they do.

Do not worry about tomorrow.

Oh ladies.  Most of us really struggle with this.  We live in tomorrow land.  We worry over our commitments, our laundry schedule, our kid’s college funds… so many things.  But God does not want us to live in the future.  He wants us to be present and appreciate the day He has given to us.  He wants us to be grateful for the moments we have, for the people He puts in our path.

I was listening to a lecture on being more present and the speaker said that one of the best ways we can work on being more present is by taking a deep breath and paying attention to our breathing.  When we pause and notice our breathing, something happens in our brain that helps us focus.  It gives us clarity.  It quiets the noise.  So when I’m feeling really amped up, I take a deep breath, I calm down and I say this scripture to myself.This is a battle we must fight every day.

I don’t know about you but there are days I have, super productive days, where I’ve slayed my To Do list and I’m feeling on top of the world!  Then I get to the end of the day and I realize that I haven’t spent even 15 minutes of eye-to-eye time with my children.  In my whole day, I haven’t slowed down enough to spend time with them where I give them my undivided attention.  Not even for 15 minutes!

So now that is officially one of my daily goals. Spend at least 15 minutes of eye-to-eye, undistracted, truly present time with each of my kids.  And on days where I don’t check off that check box at night, I know I’ve missed something special, a gift that God has given me that I have left unappreciated.

There is already enough evil.

This is the part of this scripture that is often left unmentioned.  I don’t think people like the word evil.  I don’t think many of us even really understand what it means.  There is horrible evil in the world like child trafficking or Christian persecution.  And there is the movie style of evil with demons and horns and such.

But so many of us don’t acknowledge the everyday spiritual warfare that’s being thrown our way.There is a war for our souls and the devil wants to do everything he can to distract you from loving God.  This happens from the moment you wake up to the moment go to sleep.  And it’s subtle warfare.  It’s whispers of envy, pangs of greed, bouts of laziness… anything to get you to be less than what God designed you to be.  And so often we feel guilty, like these short comings are our own fault.  And though yes, we have our own free will and we do make the bad choices on our own, I don’t think we give enough credit to the devil who tempted us into making those bad choice.

I think if we were to acknowledge those temptations more, we wouldn’t beat ourselves up about our choices as much and we would fight them more strongly.

So that’s a lot to process in just two short versus.  But that’s why it’s my favorite.  That’s why I lean on these verses when I don’t know what else to do.  These verses give me hope, strength and comfort.  I feel forgiveness from the Lord in these verses.  I feel the strength to try harder tomorrow in these verses.

So I just wanted to share those with you this week.  I hope they bring you comfort.