My family is preparing for our vacation. My youngest son is a senior (just a minute while I sob) and he chose the Southwest for his trip. So, we will soon take off for our 3000 plus mile journey. This is kind of a dream trip for my family. Our first stop will be Taos, NM, then the Painted Desert/Petrified Forest, and on to Flagstaff, AZ. Our final stop before heading home will be the desert in Oro Valley, AZ for Christmas. Ten days in all. Exciting, right?
So, why do I feel anxious? I’m struggling with leaving my dog—don’t laugh—He’s staying with my mother-in-law and I’m afraid when I come back he’ll love her more. (Look, that’s a valid concern, okay?!) But, last night, I also began feeling a bit homesick.
We haven’t even left yet and I’m looking forward to being home? I’ve anticipated this trip for months! Now that the time is drawing near, I’m feeling anxious and nervous. What If’s are filling my head. What if the weather is bad? What if we have an accident? What if one of us gets sick?
Why can’t I just look forward to this wonderful opportunity? Why do I want to stay home with chores, work, drama…the daily ho-hums? Why wouldn’t I want to explore new (to me) and exciting places?
As I was writing this, I realized it’s not just this trip causes me some anxiety. There is another trip I’ve been planning my entire life. A place much more breathtaking than the Grand Canyon. This trip will take me to paradise…a place beyond my comprehension.
Of course, I’m speaking of Heaven. My future destination. The perfect place. There will be no fear. No anxiety. No sickness. No loneliness. No pain. A place of unimaginable joy. So, why do I fear it? Why do I fear…and if I am being honest… dread going to Heaven? (Remember, I’m saying I’m being honest…don’t let your jaw drop to the ground.)
As a girl I wanted to get married and have children before Jesus came for me. As a mom, I’ve feared dying before my children were grown, leaving them motherless. And, throughout my life I’ve feared being too sinful, not good enough, less than perfect…I could go on. Quite frankly, I have clung to this world, not wanting to leave it…afraid of the unknown. Even now, writing these words causes my stomach to churn. Do you want to know my actual thoughts right now? “What if just writing these words I am writing my destiny, causing me to die on this trip to the Southwest?”
(Again, just being honest).
It’s in times like these I have to reach out to God’s Word. What does He say?
Regarding worry and fear:
Matthew 6:25a “Therefore I tell you, stop being worried or anxious (perpetually uneasy, distracted) about your life”
John 14:27 Peace I leave with you; My [perfect] peace I give to you; not as the world gives do I give to you. Do not let your heart be troubled, nor let it be afraid. [Let My perfect peace calm you in every circumstance and give you courage and strength for every challenge.]
2 Timothy 1:7 For God did not give us a spirit of timidity or cowardice or fear, but [He has given us a spirit] of power and of love and of sound judgment and personal discipline [abilities that result in a calm, well-balanced mind and self-control].
Psalm 91:4 Like a bird protecting its young, God will cover you with His feathers, will protect you under His great wings; His faithfulness will form a shield around you, a rock-solid wall to protect you.
John 14:16 Jesus answered, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.” If I have Jesus, I am going to the Father in Heaven one day!
Philippians 1:21-23 For to me, to live is Christ [He is my source of joy, my reason to live] and to die is gain [for I will be with Him in eternity]. If, however, it is to be life here and I am to go on living, this will mean useful and productive service for me; so I do not know which to choose [if I am given that choice]. But I am hard-pressed between the two. I have the desire to leave [this world] and be with Christ, for that is far, far better;
John 14:2 In My Father’s house are many dwelling places. If it were not so, I would have told you, because I am going there to prepare a place for you. Jesus is in Heaven preparing a place for ME!
Hebrews 11:10 For he was [waiting expectantly and confidently] looking forward to the city which has foundations, [an eternal, heavenly city] whose architect and builder is God.
What is the most beautiful city you have ever seen? Paris? Lisbon? Rome? Venice? Prague? Amsterdam?
These cities were created by mere men. Heaven was built by God Himself! Can you imagine the beauty?
Ah!!! It’s time for me to stop worrying and enjoy my vacation, yes? AND, why would I want to stay here on this earth when Heaven is my REAL home and absolutely beyond fabulous?
Do you find your life is bound by fear and worry? Are you concerned you aren’t ready to go to Heaven? Send me a message through Sarah’s email at firstname.lastname@example.org and I’ll be happy to talk with you.
<3 Happy New Year!!!
Lisa Bull sees her life as a journey along God’s divine plan. While considering herself an expert on nothing, she enjoys laughing and has made “choosing joy” her motto. Lisa has experienced God’s unfailing love and grace in her life and wants nothing more than for others to enjoy that same gift in their lives.
Lisa is the daughter and granddaughter of ministers. She has multiple relatives in ministry on both sides of her father’s family including several pastors, pastor’s wives, and missionaries. In fact, ministry in her maternal grandmother’s family can be traced back several generations. She loves being a wife and mother of two terrific young men.