My Thanksgiving weekend, like much of my life, was a little soured by my tendency to obsess over those problems that often cause me grief. I fretted further that November, perhaps my favorite month, was going to end with stains of stress on it. But I hope that I’m learning a lesson to ameliorate that bad habit in the future.
Last night I went and looked up my journal entry for Sunday, April 11, 2004, which reads in part, “I’ve had two big moments of panic recently, both of which have confirmed that the Lord knows best and is watching out for me….Thank you, Lord, and help me to have more faith and trust, and less worry and sweat.”
The ellipses there explain what the two problems were. I can remember how much they bothered me, and how relieved I was to find deliverance, but I still worry a lot about all the trials that come my way. I wonder what I should have done differently, I blame myself, I imagine how much suffering lies ahead because of them.
But I’ll try to remember the lessons of the past; as I once read, we almost always overreact to things, and nothing is as important as it first seems. No doubt that when I look back on the present troubles, I’ll be surprised at the way in which a loving God brought me and my family through.
If my journal hadn’t given details, I wouldn’t have been able to even remember what the terrifying tribulations had been in April 2004. I suppose that, four years from now, those things that wrench my heart will also be just so much water under the bridge.
Lead, kindly Light, amid th’encircling gloom, lead Thou me on!
The night is dark, and I am far from home; lead Thou me on!
Keep Thou my feet; I do not ask to see
The distant scene; one step enough for me.
I was not ever thus, nor prayed that Thou shouldst lead me on;
I loved to choose and see my path; but now lead Thou me on!
I loved the garish day, and, spite of fears,
Pride ruled my will. Remember not past years!
So long Thy power hath blest me, sure it still will lead me on.
O’er moor and fen, o’er crag and torrent, till the night is gone,
And with the morn those angel faces smile, which I
Have loved long since, and lost awhile!
Meantime, along the narrow rugged path, Thyself hast trod,
Lead, Savior, lead me home in childlike faith, home to my God.
To rest forever after earthly strife
In the calm light of everlasting life.