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God Is The Author Of Your Story (via Jean Williams)

A reflection on life, human expectation, personal growth, and what matters above all from Jean Williams.
An excerpt:

God is the author of my story. And he’s a far better author than I could ever be. I wouldn’t have written so much hardship into the recent pages of our life. But as I look back, I’m surprised to realise that, in some ways, the suffering is the part I’m most grateful for. It’s helped me see just how weak I am, and driven me to rely on God’s strength. It’s chased me into his arms, and deepened my knowledge of him. It compels me to set my hope on eternity rather than this life, and moves me to comfort others with the comfort I’ve received (2 Cor 1:3-7). I don’t fear the future like I used to, because God has been with me in the darkest times. I have tested him, and he has proved true. His faithfulness seems tangible to me now, solid rock under my feet. My faith is more stable, my joy more intense, and Jesus more precious. No one would ask for it – the grief, pain and fear – but in God’s mercy I have gained more than I have lost.
Of course, this perspective is only possible at one of those pauses in the story when you stop and reflect on what is past. On the darker pages that perspective is lost.
Read the whole post at Gospel Coalition Australia.

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Three Steps Out Of Worry (via Jean Williams)

Jean Williams’ description of worry resonated with me, a committed worrier from way back.
Her personal story of three steps she undertook in walking away from being consumed by worry resonated as well.

From her post:

“Do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.” (Matthew 6:34)
I’ve spent a lot of my life worrying. Here’s how it works. My mind, unbidden, invents a number of possible futures. I figure out how to respond to each one: “If this happens, then ….” At some hidden level I’m convinced that if I imagine and prepare for enough scenarios, I won’t be surprised by whatever comes. I’ll be ready. Better than that, I’ll hold hardship at bay. Because how can the worst happen if you anticipate it? How can it happen if you prepare for it?
It sounds ridiculous when you put it into words. The future comes whether you anticipate it or not. If I imagine a hundred possible futures, at least 99 of them won’t come to pass. More likely, none of them will come to pass. Something else will happen, something quite unexpected. In the meantime, I will have wasted hours of mental energy (do you measure mental energy in hours?) trying to prepare for all kinds of events that never happen. Even prayer becomes a cover for playing over them in my mind, and working up enough strength to face them.

Read the whole post here.