All is dark and quiet as it should be in the dead of night. Then, as if on cue, the curtains begin to roll back and the drama begins. You squeeze your eyes closed and attempt a refusal to watch as regrets and possibilities are reenacted. The scenes are vivid and full of emotion. They are hard to ignore. Although you pull your pillow tight about your ears, you can’t seem to muffle the wearisome words. It is a night rehearsal, one you don’t care to attend but seem obliged to.
Night rehearsals of this sort rarely lead to better performances. Instead they compromise our ability to perform at our best offering instead broken sleep and tired thoughts. The plot is often heavy and without hope. The star of the show is likely to be Wearisome Worry and her company of Peace-Thieves. All of this drama is played out in fine fashion for a reluctant audience of one, you yourself, when what you really want to do is just go back to sleep.
Rehearsal could be defined as a private practice for a public performance. While there is plenty of merit in being prepared and considering consequences, when we cross over the proverbial line of worry we may find ourselves attending a night rehearsal.
Recently I wrote these words.
“It seemed like such a very long time since I could remember not being worried about something. After all, I am a mom of many. I have been told that I have a great capacity to love and unfortunately I think that is often accompanied by a great capacity to fret.”
We worry because we are concerned; we are concerned because we care. Here’s the good news, God cares too. Because God does love us and cares about what concerns us, He has provided a beautiful way to close the curtains on the night rehearsals. He dismisses the peace-thieves and sends them on their way when we turn to Him in prayer. We have the choice to become a warrior instead of a worrier.
I’m going to make a concerted effort to make sure that I am not worrying my prayers. I am going to try to instead become a prayer-warrior. I’m going to give myself permission to not understand it all, fix it all or even get it all right. I’m going to take the offensive rather than the defensive stance. I think that is the bottom line. As a warrior, we feel empowered while a worrier is instead cowered. I do not want to live my life in a state of distress and feeling overwhelmed constantly. I want to face life with courage and hope.
How about you? What will you choose? Prayer-warrior or prayer worrier? Will you waste energy and time rehearsing, retelling and reliving the things that have happened or may happen? Or will you choose to trust the Lord with the details, with the results, and with the future?