Thursday, August 11, 2011

I've forgotten why I do it, but I tread water just the same.

I learned to tread water as a necessity. I am simply too short to touch in many pools. However, while most people hate to tread, I love it. I love the feeling of staying afloat in my own power. It is a competition against natural forces. Who will win-Anna or gravity? I was once told that "a real man can tread water for five minutes with his hands behind his back." You better believe that I can tread for more than five minutes without using my hands! But I can't tread forever, no matter how hard I try...and that frustrates me.

My life right now feels a whole lot like treading water. It's a waiting game...waiting for provision, for healing, for direction, for the future. But the problem is that I can't tread forever. I can try, and I'll make it for a while, but I always fail. I always start to drown in my sin, in my worries, in my self.
And then I realize that I'm drowning and I hate myself and want to fix things but I can't.
I am worn out. I am tired. I can't do it anymore. I quit.

Thankfully, there is an answer to my exhaustion. There is a Lifesaver near to me always. I simply have to grab on. Do I still want to stay afloat on my own? Yes. Can I stay afloat on my own? No. Never.

Even in my tenth year of following Christ, I have to reach for the Savior. I cannot do it on my own. I cannot worry it all away. I cannot fix circumstances, relationships, or situations. I can break, but only He can mend. And this frustrates me. I make messes. I want to clean them up. I am in trouble. I want to pull myself out of it. Around and around, my head spins, searching for answers to the questions and solutions to the problems...and my head can't find them.
There is only one answer: Be still.

Be still and the Savior will catch you.
Be still and you can catch your breath as He holds you.
Be still and He will reveal His plan.
Be still and He will overcome.
Be still and you will see how small you are compared to His greatness.
Be still.

As I lay in bed last night, restless and pondering my sins and my worries, a favorite hymn of mine shuffled onto my Ipod and the words filled my head with the truth...
Be still, my soul; the Lord is on thy side;
Bear patiently the cross of grief or pain;
Leave to thy God to order and provide;
In every change He faithful will remain.
Be still, my soul; thy best, thy heavenly, Friend
Through thorny ways leads to a joyful end.

["Leave to thy God to order and provide." Don't convince yourself that you can do it, Anna. It's a lie. He's the One who can change things. He has always been faithful, even when you are faithless. Don't doubt Him.]

Being still is hard for me. I imagine it is for you too. But joy comes when we stop trying to stay afloat on our own and we let Him rescue us. Not just the one time I gave my life to Him and accepted His salvation, but I must let Him rescue me daily. I must stop trying to do it alone. I must stop treading and rest in His ability to keep me atop the worries and circumstances. I must be still.

[Click the first "tread water" to hear the soundtrack to this post.]

No comments:

Post a Comment

Please please please talk to me!
I'd love to hear your opinions.