What Do You Need For Now?
There has been a phrase on my mind for the past few days and I believe it’s from the Spirit of God. I’m hearing “Take only what you need… take ONLY what you need”. Sometimes, we overwhelm ourselves trying to get everything done today, right now, as if we’re trying to win some imaginary race. We need to get used to being undone and accept that there will always be things for us to do.
When you’re constantly overthinking about what’s ahead, you become so anxious about potential future issues that you forget to be present and enjoy the journey of life.
Exodus 16:16 says, “This is the thing which the Lord has commanded: Let every man gather it according to each one’s need, one omer for each person, according to the number of persons; let every man take for those in his tent”. There were some hard-headed folks in the children of Israel’s camp who tried to take more than they needed, and Exodus 16:20 says the leftovers grew worms and began to stink.
Reading this made me wonder why they felt they needed to save anything when they had a direct word from the Lord? Didn’t they trust Him by now? Do we? In fact, their entire process, from bondage to freedom, was filled with constant complaints and murmuring.
Eating the Process Whole
Recently, God helped me to understand their behavior in a very practical way. I hate grocery shopping! I don’t know why – I just do. When I go to the store, I feel like I want to get as much as I can so that the groceries can last, and I won’t have to come back anytime soon.
The other day I was in the market having these exact thoughts – grabbing all these items to just get it over with. I heard the Spirit say “Why? You’ll be back either way. As long as you live, grocery shopping will be a part of your life’s routine. You don’t have a problem with grocery shopping, you have a problem with continuity. You are so obsessed with being done”.
If we resist or rebel against the needful things in life that we have no way around – we have decided to make our lives miserable!
God Will Never Steer Us Wrong
When reading Exodus, chapter 15 starts off with a song to the Lord. The people were so happy to have been saved by the powerful hand of God! They witnessed so many miracles, signs, and wonders – even the defeat of Pharaoh and his army. Three days into the journey, they start complaining to Moses about the lack of water (Exodus 15:22-24). Anxiety and fear of the unknown crept in and, despite their amazing encounters with God, they were struggling to find joy in their journey to the promised land.
Anxiety is a manifestation of fear and doubt. When we have complete trust, we’re not anxious. Greatness and success happen gradually over time. Even God took His time to create the heavens and the earth in seven days. So, why do we feel so rushed to do everything? Why do we forsake the process of greatness?
God is saying slow down. If we don’t get comfortable taking one step at a time, we will never accomplish anything worthwhile without driving ourselves crazy. Balance is key. Yes, we should work hard and be productive and use time wisely, but we should not put debilitating pressure on ourselves by doing everything under extreme stress and worry.
The worst part about this kind of anxiety is never being present. When you’re at your job, you’re thinking about what you have to do at home. When you’re at home, your trying to remember if you forgot to do anything at work. You’re spending time with the kids and making a mental to-do list…
Fight to stay in the moment, being fully engaged in what you’re doing. If we’re not careful, we can miss some amazing experiences in the “now”. It scares me to think I might miss life as it’s happening because, in my mind, I’m always “somewhere else”. We need to pray for the wisdom to enjoy every minute we have to the fullest and embrace our God-given tasks – even the mundane.
The key to all of this is God. Philippians 4:6 says “Don’t worry about anything but pray about everything”. True contentment is only attained through the peace of God. Getting lost in Him – in worship, in prayer – He puts us at ease and enables us to have joy in all circumstances and be fulfilled. Let’s not allow anxiety to rush or steal our time anymore, Team!
So, What’s the Play Call?
- A woman of God I know used to say, “Think about what you’re thinking about”. Take captive every idle thought and make it obedient to Christ (2 Corinthians 10:5).
- Put your outdoor work in order, and get your fields ready; then build your house (Proverbs 24:27). Take your time, don’t rush the process of things.
- She is clothed with strength and dignity; she laughs without fear of the future (Proverbs 31:25). There’s no anxiety when you are well prepared. The Proverbs 31 woman rose early to care for her family and owned successful businesses! There is nothing wrong with multi-tasking and drive, but keep God first to maintain your balance.