Friday morning. I couldn't seem to concentrate. I sat down to read the Bible chapters for the day. I read a line or two and then started to drift. My eyes were moving along the page, but I'd be hard pressed to tell you what I'd been reading beyond a word here or there. No, what I heard was "Gee I wonder if I can find curtains I'd like for the kitchen sitting area any time soon? What should I have for dinner tomorrow? I really need to run to the grocery...but maybe not. I wonder how the baby is getting along? Are Bess and Sam overwhelmed? Amie must be feeling exhausted just now. I wonder if I've made any sales at the booth?" My mind ran on and on. Not focused in any one spot, least of all the Bible.
That's just the inner distractions I heard...There were outward ones as well. John called. I heard the newscast on TV in the next room and got caught up in the news stories. I started a load of clothes and the machine finished it's run, making me immediately aware that I needed to do another task... In short, I was very aware of everything except what God might be saying to me.
Friday morning, I was filled with anxiety. I am not agoraphobic, but I am an introvert. I have a number of social obligations coming up in the next six weeks and I was nervous about managing my home, planned projects, booth, and all else that seemed to be coming at me at once. Added to that was my worry that I wouldn't manage to get all the housework done and dinner prepared before guests arrived that day. I sat down to read my study three different times and struggled hard to pull my mind back into focus. I read the same passage four or five times. I put my hands over my ears and cried out to God., "Please make my mind be quiet!"
I walked through the house that morning and turned off every single thing that was distracting me: the phone, the computer, the television, even the fans that were moving the warmish air. Then I sat down and prayed in earnest. I told God every single thing that was standing between me and Him. Every little distraction, anxiety, thought, worry, every social event between now and the last one in six weeks.
Do you know what He said? "All you HAVE to do is today." Today? Just today? Not tomorrow or Sunday or next week? "Just today." Do you know what a huge weight came off my shoulders then? All those things were in the future. When I shut down the anxiety and looked at my thoughts, I realized that I'd let a lot run amok in my mind. True, I had company coming for dinner. True, I like to have food prepared for the weekend if I possibly can and generally I do that on Friday if it's possible. But kitchen sitting area curtains? That did NOT belong to the day. Nor did many of the other things I'd been so caught up with.
I sat down and did my study in peace for the first time all week long. The day was lovely, truly lovely. Each time I felt myself slipping into that other area, that area that dealt with the next day or the next week or month, I'd whisper the words that I'd heard that morning. "Just today."