My youngest son, Parker, is one of the easiest going 2nd graders you will ever find in this world. Nothing phases the kid. He walks around with a permanent smile and not a care in the world. While this nonchalant attitude is awesome, it does have a down side. To put it mildly, he’s not very detail oriented. To be blunt, he can be a bit of an airhead! (I’ve always said he takes after his mother!)
A few weeks ago, when we were in the middle of our normal busy morning routine, Parker walked into the living room and declares, “I’m ready for school!” I took one look at him and burst out laughing. He stood there with his hair combed, backpack on, shirt shoes and socks all perfectly attired, but no pants. He looked at me with that sweet smile of his, completely unaware that he was about to go show all of his friends his super hero tighty whities. Praise God, at least they were clean!
I looked at Parker and asked, “Are you sure you’re ready?” Without hesitation he responded, “Yep!” I asked a second time, “Are you really sure?” and got the same reply. After as short pause I said, “Parker, look down.” He finally noticed the problem, shouted “oops!”, and ran back to his room to complete his ensemble. I hope the Lord will forgive me but I was so very tempted to see if I could get him all the way to school without ever catching on. I might not be up for Father of the Year.
While I do hope he learns to fully dress himself before leaving for college, I never want him to loose his carefree approach to life. In fact, I need to be willing to be a little bit more like him and learn to face each day with the same laissez faire perspective.
Consider for a moment what Jesus has to say on the subject.
“Therefore I tell you, do not be anxious about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink, nor about your body, what you will put on. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothing? Look at the birds of the air: they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they? And which of you by being anxious can add a single hour to his span of life? (Matthew 6:25–27, ESV)
Although I know these words well, I find myself ignoring them on a regular basis. I start fretting over this and that and worrying about how something will work out, only to find that all that stress did me absolutely no good. In fact, it always has the opposite effect.
For example, just a few days ago while on a late night drive to the church, I found myself arguing with God. The particulars don’t matter, but suffice to say, I had my plans, God had His, and we weren’t on the same page. It wasn’t that I actually disagreed with what I felt God telling me to do; it was that I didn’t understand how His plan made any sense for my life. For the next three days I continually stressed over this issue. I didn’t sleep well, had a constant headache, and fairly sour mood.
However, over the span of one hour and through an unexpected phone call from a friend, God completely turned my attitude around. I could finally understand what God was up to and I also realized that all that stress and anxiety I had been holding onto had been completely pointless.
I need to remember, and I hope you will as well, that God knows what He is doing long before we do. When we know the promises of God, there is no need to worry over the details.
My son might forget to wear pants some days, but his lighthearted nature is a joy to behold. Not that I get to claim much credit, but at least a part of that attitude comes from knowing that his mom and dad will take care of him. How much more is that fact true when it comes to our Heavenly Father! I should strive to live a life so characterized by my trust in God’s provisions and plans that I often forget to even think about the details of what I need.