For the next 7 days we are on vacation. Now that we are here I have two big concerns. The first is that we have fun the second is that we stay under budget. There is plenty of money for the trip as we have planned well, but that doesn’t mean I don’t need to watch every penny so nothing goes to waste.
I don’t want money to get in the way of us enjoying ourselves, but if we don’t manage it right it could. This isn’t just not spending money to do something fun, but if we over spend it will have dire consequences as well.
While it is fun to see things you’ve never seen before and buy all kinds of souvenirs, they aren’t important in the long run nor do they help us meet our goals for this trip.
Our plan is to relax, have fun, spend time together as a family, and remember why we all like each other, basically RE-CREATE our love of family. This is vital as we have been struggling lately. With two children who are needing constant training and William who has his issues, our nerves are frayed and we are worn.
With all that being said, I could sit here and worry. I could stress. I could make myself sick thinking about all the things we can’t do. I could stress about every penny, but it would be counterproductive to what this trip is about as well.
So to calm my own soul, I went digging, in the only place you can go for comfort, and according to my Grandpa the best place in the world.
6 do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God.7 And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.
I know this isn’t directly talking about money, but this is EXACTLY what I needed to read today. God is telling me not to be anxious about whether or not we do everything on my list. He is telling me not to worry.
This verse tells me to pray about it, but it is the THANKSGIVING part that really sticks out to me. One of my favorite books EVER is One Thousand Gifts by Ann Voskamp. In it she talks about how to live a Joy filled life due to being THANKFUL in all situations.
Finally, PEACE, this is what my heart was longing for this morning. I wanted to be at peace with not having all the money we could ever want to spend on things we don’t need. This isn’t just regular everyday peace though; it is the peace that passes all understanding. It is a peace that envelopes you, relaxes you, tells you EVERYTHING will work out just as He planned, and lets you know that everything is going to be alright.
Things don’t always go as planned, in fact most things never go as you see them in your head. (Perfect example is what I imagined Forest Park in St. Louis looking like and what it really looked like. I guess I watched Meet Me in St. Louis too many times.) This isn’t a problem, unless you are a perfectionist who hates to adapt. (Who me?)
My must see/do list for Branson, may not work out as planned. I could sit here and complain, mope, or even fall apart, but I won’t. Not only because of this scripture, but because as my children informed me, “we could play in the pool all week and have a blast.” They aren’t the ones who NEED/WANT these experiences, I do. They are the ones demanding to go out to eat every day, I am. They are demanding NOTHING, I am.
I am the one who is anxious about money and having fun, but who am I trying to make memories and having fun for, them or me? Since when did this trip become solely about my wants and desires? Why am I so anxious for things that in the long run don’t matter instead of being THANKFUL for the things we do? I HAVE NO IDEA, except that I’m human and can be pretty selfish.
So today, I’m laying this burden of anxiety down at the cross. I’m giving it to my Savior who will smile and love me anyway. He will give me the grace I so desperately need and the peace to make it all better. He will remind me of the moments and show me the reasons to be thankful.
Today is the true beginning of our vacation, and while it may not go as I originally planned, I’m going to LOVE every moment of it. I’m going to be at peace, joyful and thankful not only for this opportunity but the people I’m sharing it with as well.
What burden of anxiety do you need to lay down so you can find PEACE?