We may recall Jesus’s words to his friend and disciple, “Martha, Martha, you are anxious and troubled about many things.” (Luke 10:41) He made it clear to her that this was not a good thing.
In the turmoil of today’s world, I can find myself “troubled about many things”. While it is pretty normal to be concerned as we see different troubling things happening, the problem is allowing those concerns to take over our minds and hearts and cause anxiety and discouragement and even depression. We need to “be on our spiritual toes” to not let this happen.
Here’s a couple of thoughts that might help. One is from the late Stephen Covey who coined many helpful phrases. He said that while we have “circles of concerns and circles of influence”… we need to spend our time and energies in our circles of influence…areas where I can actually make a difference…where can I help the situation….where I can be part of the solution.
Regarding the Coronavirus, agonizing over the statistics, trying to figure out China’s role, wondering how we’re going to fix the economy, pondering over the second wave question are all mainly out of our ability to influence. We should pray for these issues and for the leaders with authority, but we shouldn’t “be wringing our hands in concern.”
What about the social unrest? Who is not concerned about what’s been going on? While there are legitimate problems needing to be addressed, what is my role in solving them. I know I must live as a Christian and treat every person with dignity. I should have been doing this prior to the latest unrest. I need to support those who are championing legitimate efforts to bring needed change.
I find that I need to support those who first champion the right to life…the most fundamental right…those who protect religious liberty and the basic common sense truths of natural law. At the same time I must oppose those who use these terrible incidents to bring violence and riots especially to those most affected by them.
But how do you figure all of this out?
Well, it seems we should be doing the work God has given us to do…. in places where we have “influence”. We should live as sons and daughters of God, as fathers and mothers and grandparents, single men and women, as children and young people, as workers, as disciples on mission… doing what God has given us to do…. doing our job.
“Who then is the faithful and wise servant, whom the master has put in charge of his household, to give the others their food at the proper time? Blessed is that servant whose master returns and finds him doing his job.” (Mt. 24:45-46)
So, let us keep our eyes on the kingdom of God and do our duty as God has given it to us…. and we will not be anxious, but will be at peace. And that is good news.