Sunday, June 26, 2011

Trust is letting go of the need to control all aspects of our lives and letting God take care of the details.

For the non-religious, another version of the quote in the title is:
"Trust is desiring an outcome while giving up control of the process."

As I noted in some other postings, I hit a fairly prolonged period of worry, stress and anxiety recently.   All of the worry, stress and anxiety added up to restlessness, worried thoughts and plenty of sleepless nights.   Fortunately, I've had plenty of support as I worked through this period.  It certainly hasn't been easy by any means and I think I still have a few things to work out.

The one thing I realized that stressed me out was my over worry about a situation and trying to control as many aspects of the situation as I could.   I think most people can relate to this.  When you are worried about something, it's because you feel you don't quite have control over every aspect of the potential outcome.

Coming from a sports background, I think the best example would be a coach worrying about how his particular team will do during a game.  The coach can have his own team practice and prepare for the next game perfectly.  Yet, the coach can't control how each player will actually perform during the game.  The coach can't control how the OTHER team will perform during the game.  That is why in sports, even so called "bad teams" win games too.  Teams with chemistry and talent will prevail the majority of the time over weaker teams.  However, even good teams have bad nights and weaker teams have good nights.  It is a fact of life.

Alas, even though I understand that from a sport perspective, it's been difficult to accept on the particular situation I've been dealing with.  Yet as I as struggled with my stress and trying to come to terms with things, I realized I had to do something about it.  I ultimately decided to put some faith (or trust if you must) into God.  I realized life is too precious too continually worry about future outcomes where there is so much to do TODAY.

I will say that trust and/or faith in life is not easy to come by sometime.  About 14 years ago, while I was in college, I enrolled in a class that was part of a community involvement center program at the school.   As part of the program, we went on a weekend retreat to bond together at a camp.  One of the lessons taught was to trust and have faith in all of us that worked in the program.  The lesson was taught by having people pair off.  One person was to leave the second person.  The catch was the second person was to have their eyes closed.

I remember I had difficulty keeping my eyes closed.  A lot of "What If's" went through my mind.  Yet, after the retreat had concluded, the lesson stuck with me.  I remember thinking that I finally understood the nature of faith in God.  Even though we spend all of waking hours with our eyes open, we are blind to what will happen in the future.  You have to trust and have faith that God will not steer you wrong.   Alas, it has taken me even more year than that to really understand the impact of it all.

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