Monday, March 3, 2014

"Do Not Worry About Tomorrow..."

"Do not worry about tomorrow; tomorrow will take care of itself. 
Sufficient for the day is its own evil."

As I sat at Mass listening to these concluding words of the Gospel I was immediately transported back to a sunny summer afternoon when this scripture first came alive to me. It was early afternoon and I had just collapsed in a heap of frustrated tears onto my bed. I had spent the previous hour or so ping-ponging back and forth between the bedrooms of my newborn daughter and my less than two year old son. It was my first week tackling the task of parenting on my own since my daughter's birth. My parents had returned home and my husband had gone back to work, leaving me alone and outnumbered. Naptime was elusive that day to say the least. Attempting to soothe two crying, overtired children while I myself was sleep-deprived and hormonal resulted in all three of us crying. After what seemed like an eternity, they both finally fell asleep. I lay on my bed and prayed out loud: "Lord., I cannot do this another day. Not. one. more. day."

After laying there for a few minutes, feeling very sorry for myself and agonizing over what what would transpire at naptime tomorrow, I looked over and saw my Bible on my nightstand. UGH. I thought about how tired I was and how the last thing in the world I wanted to do was read. And then I thought about how I had made a commitment to myself when my daughter was born a few short weeks prior to begin to read through Matthew's gospel each day. I knew that reading a few short lines of scripture and uttering a few desperate prayers would be the extent of my prayer life during those first few months with a new baby.  On this day, however, even reading the few lines I had promised myself to read each day seemed overwhelming. 

I picked up my Bible, opened it to where I had left off the previous day and began to read: "Do not worry about tomorrow; tomorrow will take care of itself. Sufficient for the day is its own evil." I was stunned. The peace of the Lord washed over me as I read those words. I read the passage again and let out a half-laughing, half-crying prayer of thanksgiving. The Lord had met me exactly where I was and provided for me the message that I needed to hear. All the despair and frustration I had felt just a moment before vanished. I no longer felt alone and outnumbered by my babies and I knew in my heart that the Lord would provide for us.

I learned two very valuable lessons that day in the trenches of life with two little ones - lessons that have seen me through many a struggle since then. The first lesson I learned is that the scriptures are a living word, speaking to us vividly in the present moment. The second lesson I learned is that in our striving for the heights of holiness even the tiniest effort on our part to reach out to the Lord is both fueled by grace and met with grace.  I could not have picked up that Bible on my own that afternoon. It was the Lord's grace that propelled me to do so. And I never could have planned the words I would read that day. It was the Lord's special gift to me.

I would love to say that since that day I have never been anxious about what tomorrow will bring, but that is not the case. What I can say in all sincerity is that I know that whatever tomorrow brings, the Lord's grace will be there and that will be enough.

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1 comment:

  1. Happy Mother's Day!! Thank you so much for sharing your post at the "Let's Talk Mother's Day link-up! Reading your words were so reassuring to me today, as just this week, my husband had shared that very same verse with me after I sat down crying with worry and anxiety wondering if I can handle having another baby (we are due with #6 in just a couple of weeks). You are right - we have to trust Him when He tells us that His grace is perfect, and it will sustain us!! :) My husband and I are FUS grads - miss it so much there. Many blessings to you in your studies!!