I came across a great quote by St. Teresa of Avila, “Leave it in God’s hands, where it belongs.” It struck me as do many writings of the saints, of the pure simplicity of that statement. Whether you are Catholic or a Christian of another denomination, one should appreciate this humble wisdom.

I have heard it said all my life, that it is written more than 365 times in Scripture, not to worry or fear. That’s a lot of reminders! As human beings we seem to pride ourselves on the level of anxiety and worry we allow to creep into our lives.

A man runs into an old friend in the street,

“Sam, is that you? How ya doing bud, its been years.”

“David? Can it be? Wow!”

“Sam, dude, catch me up.”

“My boss is nuts he’s got me stressed outta my mind, I’m worried sick about this project. Meg and the kids are great, but she found a lump and we are going nuts wondering what that’s all about. My parents are getting old and are going to need more attention. We’re totally stressing about how we can handle that, along with all this other stuff going on…..”

Some times we let our worry level define who we are. Why?

Modern medicine points out the toxicity that stress and worry puts on our health. God reminds us again and again to  hand it all over to Him. Why are we so reluctant to do so?

My guess is its about perceived control. If I let something go, will it get taken care of pronto? Will it be handled in the way I want? I also know from experience that we are pretty impatient as a race, homo sapiens, that is.  This is because of all the above reasons and our obsessive IMPATIENCE. The right here, right now instantaneous technology doesn’t help, but I would suggest we have been impatient from the beginning so I can’t blame it all on the new technology as much as I would like to.

At a time in my life when I was really burning the worry lamp, and pummeling heaven with my anxious prayers, I came to mass one morning and noticed that the priest was going to be the one not known for his rousing homilies. I sighed audibly with most of the old regulars there, but I stayed and opened my heart. I can’t remember the opening lines of his homily but I have never forgotten this poem he read:

Broken Dreams

 As children bring their broken toys with tears for us to mend,

I brought my broken dreams to God, because God was my friend.

But then instead of leaving God in peace to work alone,
I hung around and tried to help, with ways that were my own.

When, at last, I snatched them back and cried, “How can You be so slow”
“My child,” God said, “what could I do? You never did let go.”

 Author Unknown

I thank God that my pompous, prideful, arrogance did not get in the way of the message because of the messenger. This was true of me and why to this day it rings so powerfully in my heart. I was praying, but hanging on out of a false sense of control. There is much to be learned in reflecting on both what St. Teresa writes and the unknown author above. First, give it all over to God because it is where real solutions happen. There is so little we really have control over; not people, not their behaviors, not illnesses, their reactions, and certainly not life. Realize this! God knows us and is doing us a huge favor by telling us not to worry and to let go. Trust that!

It would be like telling the mechanic all about my car problems and he responds saying,”oh yes I’ve seen that before, bring it in I can fix it” and I just keep tinkering with it at home and wondering why the guy hasn’t fixed it yet. It’s ludicrous.  If we can see the stupidity in that, we must also see the absurdity in hanging on to things outside the realm of our ability to resolve them.

Two, everything in life happens for a reason. I believe this to my very core, and my life has shown me this unceasingly. God knows what time and circumstances need to be in place for the solution he has in mind, to bear fruit. Everything, every single situation has merit and God can do something good with it. As the great Architect, Author and Artist- He has a plan and a purpose. Let the Master work and see what beautiful things come from our mess. He can make magnificent stained glass masterpieces, from the shards of our brokenness.

We need to take God’s simple, straight forward messages, as the means to our ultimate happiness. It is not as complicated as we tend to make it. It really is just that simple, trust Him!