Blog 1828 – 09.25.2020
The beady eyes alone on the cover of today’s children story tell a tale of unmistakable worry. There are a lot a great one liners about all the misguided energy wasted on worrying like: “Worrying is assuming responsibility for a job way above our pay grade.” But still we continue to waste all that energy. The only three occupations perhaps more above our pay grade that we continue erringly to try to employ ourselves at are judging, condemning, and warring.
My dad used to say of my mother who was quite an expert worrywart, “If your mother did not have anything to worry about, she’d be worried about that.” If that sound funny, it’s not, for worrying takes quite a toll. Reminds me of a dating joke:
“When you’re out with your honey, and your nose is kinda runny, it’s snot.”
My mother who also suffered with chronic depression and insomnia ended her life by her own hand over twenty years ago. Tragic as that may sound, a life spent worrying is even more tragic and hard not only on the worriers, but also on those who love them and who cannot find any way to comfort them.
For a long time one of my favorite chapters in the New Testament was John Chapter Fourteen, the “Don’t worry everything will turn out alright chapter”, where Jesus says over and over again to his disciples, “Let not your heart be troubled.”
I remember during an especially emotionally troubled time in my life that I was alone at a kitchen sink washing dishes, never one of my favorite chores, with tears in my eyes, when a song from my youth popped into my stream of consciousness. The words sounded as if they were from God’s lips to my heart. They echoed around in my heart and mind, “Don’t worry, Baby, everything will turn out alright.”
Believe that, and it will take the worry out of being close and out of being alone. A couple of days ago I watched the M. Night Shyamalan movie Signs again. It stars Mel Gibson as a man whose has let his wife’s tragic death shake his faith. At almost the end of the movie Mel’s son is saved from being killed by poisonous gas from an alien (the bad Extra Terrestrial kind not the far less dangerous undocumented kind.) What saves the boy’s life is a combination of things that Mel is forced to admit are impossible for him to view as coincidence. You need to watch it for yourself to get the long list of improbable things that all come together, just suffice it to say that Mel’s wife’s dying words especially those she gave him to pass on to his high school baseball hero brother to “Swing Away” and his young son’s asthma attack at just the right time preventing the alien poison from entering his lungs, come together with several other things to prevent the son’s death.
When the boy starts to breath again in his father’s arms his first words to his dad are, “Did somebody save us?” Mel, who for the six months since he lost his wife has doubted the very existence any higher power especially a benevolent one, in that moment allows hope back into his heart and answers, “Yes, somebody did.”
Even the most jaded, disappointed, and worried among us still believe in something. Do you the hit the brakes and stop the car when you approach a hill on the highway that you cannot see beyond or when coming to a bridge across a large body of water that you cannot see the other side of? No, like most of us you trust the road builders to finish the job or that if there is a problem some warning signs would alert you.
There is much we start out believing that we should discard when we learn it no longer serves us, but some things continue to pass the faith and hope test. These things we should always hold onto and be open for signs, be they lights in the sky or still small voices. Even with our foil caps on, I believe, there is a loving someone or perhaps several someone’s out there out of sight who still can read our minds and who always have our backs. Call me crazy, call me collect if you must, but call me for sure at supper time. I think it true that we have all entertained angels unaware at times and felt them watching over us.
Your friend and fellow traveler,
Don’t Worry, Baby