Faith isn’t a coat you don when it’s raining. Faith is a coat you wrap yourself in every day, no matter the weather. That’s metaphorically speaking, of course, because if you live in Texas, no way are you wearing a coat outside in July. If Texas had an official piece of clothing, like it does a bird or flower, most people would assume it’s a cowboy hat. I think it would be shorts, because most of the year that’s what we’re all wearing.
It might sound like this post is about clothing or how it’s so hot in Texas, but it’s not. Although…I do know why there are so many Christians in Texas. We’re smart enough to know that if it’s this hot here, no way do we want to end up in Hell. Texas heat will make a Christian out of most people. That being said, this week’s subject is faith. I had a conversation with someone the other day about faith. She was second guessing a decision she made and worrying about whether it was the right one. In my opinion it was, but I’m pretty sure she’s still not convinced.
It probably won’t surprise you I have a theory about faith, since I seem to have a theory about most things. Here it is: If you fill your heart with God, there’s no room left for self-doubt, worry, insecurity, or a million other negative feelings. As you grow in your relationship with God, all the good stuff permeates your entire body, and pushes out all the bad stuff. That does take some time, however, so don’t think you ask Christ into your life one day and the next every negative emotion is gone. It doesn’t work like that. As you grow in grace, you grow in faith, until one day you wake up and realize how peaceful your life is. Do you still have things you need to work on? Yes. But by the time your life has been taken over by God, you’re aware of what those weaknesses are and can work on them. Or not, because it really is hard to eat a carrot in lieu of a piece of coconut cake, so we’ll never be perfect.
To my way of thinking, worry is a cancer. Once you allow that first little bit to enter your mind, it metastasizes and soon your whole insides are eaten up with negativity. I don’t need to tell you that’s not a good thing. So how do you stop it? Slow down, take a deep breath, and turn it over to God. Just let go and let God, as the common saying goes. He really doesn’t need your help. And really, do you want to help Him? I don’t because I’m pretty sure I’ll just make the situation worse. I’d rather just relax and let Him handle things, but we all know I’m lazy.
Before I got to the point in my life where faith permeated my entire being, I used to think things like “Are you sure you got this, God?” Funny, no? I don’t know if God ever rolls His eyes at our foolishness, but if He does, I’m pretty sure that would be worth an eye roll and a heavy sigh. If you turn a problem over to Him, then spend all your time worrying about it, that shows a complete lack of faith on your part, and I can hear Him sighing all the way down here. Not a good thing.
It’s no secret I love cats, and rarely does a day go by where I haven’t thanked Father for bringing my babies into my life. I love them all, some more than others, but I won’t tell you which ones in case they’re reading this post. Studies have shown that petting a purring cat can lower your blood pressure, and that is so true. Of course, picking up a hairball can raise it, so I guess we take the good with the bad.
I’ve often wondered why God gave us dogs and cats. The only conclusion I’ve ever come to is that we have dogs so we’ll know unconditional love. We have cats to keep us grounded when we start getting too full of ourselves. Really, there isn’t much more to make you realize how unimportant you are than a cat who ignores you when they’re more concerned with sleeping than cuddling, is there?
But look at both of our animal companions. Both of them just assume we’re going to keep them fed, pet them when they want it, and take them to the vet when they’re sick. I’ve never noticed any of my babies anxiously pacing the floor, worrying about where their next meal is coming from. It just magically appears, and they don’t spend one second of their lives concerning themselves about that.
We could learn a lot from them. Maybe that’s why God gave us our furry friends. To remind us that He’s got it, He doesn’t need our help, and whatever we need is magically taken care of. Notice I didn’t say what we want magically appears, because He’s not prone to give us stuff we just want but don’t need anymore than we’re prone to give kitty babies a catnip mouse when there are about two thousand hidden somewhere in the house. Or left in the floor for us to step on in the middle of the night.
Bottom line is we need to be more like cats and dogs. We need to stop worrying about what’s going on and just “assume” it will all be taken care of, because it will. Will it be the solution we want? Not necessarily, but it will be the right one. I’m pretty sure our kitty babies haven’t been too thrilled with some of our decisions, normally ones which involve a trip to the vet and a loss of body parts, but those are the right decisions. So relax, take a nap, and know that He’s got control. In other words, become a cat. Just don’t spend all your day sleeping, because, well, somebody has to go to work and bring home the kibble. That’s your job. His job is to make sure it all works out, and He’s very good at what He does.