Ps 37:3-5 NRSV, “Trust in the Lord, and do good; so you will live in the land, and enjoy security. Take delight in the Lord, and he will give you the desires of your heart. Commit your way to the Lord; trust in him, and he will act.”
When I am letting anxiety win the day, I am not putting my trust in the Lord. Anxiety is trusting in some misguided sense of ability to reliably predict the future. I have not proven to be very good at this though. No wonder I do not “enjoy security” when I worry. I would rather live in the land.
When I look around our back yard that has become so lush, green and inviting in the last few years, I think that we are actually living in the land like David says. The hummingbirds buzzing through and stopping for a drink at our feeders feels like life in the land. I see a female oriole stop in for some grape jam. (I saw her boyfriend a few minutes ago).
What you make, Lord, is just delightful. David wants me to take delight. I’m not stealing it, but receiving it as a gift from your hands. Delight feels like life in overflow. It is a smile abiding in the heart. It is well-being that spills from my soul. Delight can find its way today into my every thought, every word, every conversation, every work. May it be, Lord.
Anxiety is trusting in some misguided sense of ability to reliably predict the future. (TWEET THIS)
(I’m grateful to have seen, for the first time this season, four hummingbirds sitting together at the same feeder without fighting and arguing. Up until today, I rarely have seen even two linger together without their squeaky little quarrels.)
Ps 37:7-8 NRSV, “Be still before the Lord, and wait patiently for him; do not fret over those who prosper in their way, over those who carry out evil devices. Refrain from anger, and forsake wrath. Do not fret—it leads only to evil.”
This “be still” feels like an echo of “trust in the Lord” in verse 3. Anxiety is opposite of stillness. It is a fretful, jittery orientation of soul. It is a shallow-breathing, short-sighted thing. Patient, unhurried waiting in the face of things going wrong (as I see it) or people doing wrong and seeming to win is hard to do, but it is the right response to reality. The momentary wins of evil and wrong are no match for the eternal victory of good.
All really shall be well. I just need enough perspective in this moment to remember that. My anger and wrath are a far inferior response to these temporary victories of darkness. My darkness doesn’t beat the darkness out there. Only faith, hope and love can do that.