I love the way God speaks to us through everyday occurrences. Today my husband and I were driving down the road here in Central America, an actual paved road no less. Many of the roads here are steep, rocky, muddy, and full of potholes. As we were driving down this paved road at a fairly good speed, I noticed a bug on our windshield. I thought to myself, “How in the world is that bug staying on there and not falling off?” I observed that he was working very hard to stay on. I also thought, “He has got to be tired.” It was then I heard that familiar, quiet, gentle voice. “You are like that bug.” I smiled.
When I noticed the bug, I was in the middle of a conversation with my husband about how I had been feeling. I had expressed that I felt stressed due to circumstances around me that I had no control over. We are currently working on the ATC training center in Central America where we are hosting multiple work teams as well as our first discipleship group of 8 young women. The responsibilities are ever before us; we work and work and work and feel at times as if we have accomplished nothing. Sometimes you just want to see the results!! I want so badly for those who come to work on the mountain with us to be touched by God in a very personal way. And sometimes I can’t see what God is doing and I get frustrated, which leads me to think harder on what I am doing wrong and what it is I can do to help God along, so that I can see the results. (I am sure this is a run-on sentence…and this is precisely how my brain works…it just runs on and on!)
Then God highlighted the bug on our windshield. The bug was striving with everything it had to hang on to a moving vehicle that was driving against the wind at high speed. I am often like this bug, striving and striving with everything I have, in my own flesh and strength, to hang on; thinking that if I let go, I will crash, it will all come to a halt, to failure, or worse, to nothing. I must strive to hang on in order to make something happen.
The reality is there will always be circumstances in life that I can not control. So, what do I do with that reality? The Lord says in Psalms 46, “Cease striving and know that I am God.” To cease striving means to be slacken in body or mind. In other words, leave it alone, be still, abate all the “what ifs” running around in your head. Striving is exhausting. Striving is futile. Don’t misunderstand me. God does give us responsibilities in which we are called to be wise stewards. However, there is a big difference between being obedient in taking the responsibilities He has given us, and taking responsibility for the outcome.
The funny thing about the bug was that once we stopped the car, it flew away. It had wings to fly all along, and rather than let go and make use of the wings he was given, he clung to the windshield working very hard to stay on. We have been given something that allows, and enables, us to release and find rest from our striving. His name is Jesus. He says, “Come to me all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart and YOU WILL FIND REST FOR YOUR SOULS. For My yoke is easy and my burden is light.”
Rest seems to be the better option. I think I will choose rest today. Rest in the One who said, “…with God all things are possible.” Rest in the One who said, “I know the plans that I have for you…plans for welfare and not for calamity to give you a future and a hope.” Rest in the One “who is able to do far more abundantly beyond all that we ask or think…”