Saint Albert the Great, Bishop and Doctor of the Church (Optional Memorial)
Whoever loses his life will save it. (Luke 17:33)
What’s the best thing you could do if you’re ever caught in quicksand? Relax! It may sound illogical, but the last thing you want to do is fight frantically to get out. Because the more you struggle, the deeper you will sink. The key is to loosen up, lean back, and allow your body to float. Your legs will slowly rise to the surface, and you’ll be able to gently pull yourself out and roll away. You just have to go against your instincts!
Fear and worry about the future can affect us in a way that’s similar to quicksand. Listening to reports of bad news, worrying about what might go wrong in our families, fear for our health—all those things can pull us down into a swamp of worry and apprehension. The more we focus on our anxious thoughts, the deeper we can sink.
Jesus’ approach to these chaotic thoughts might surprise you: don’t panic. Use the quicksand strategy instead. Instead of fretting about the future, focus on the present reality: he is already here. Try to stay calm and surrender to him so that you won’t sink.
Take today’s Gospel as a prime example. Jesus makes it clear that he doesn’t want his followers to get stuck in the fear of wondering when the Second Coming will happen or what it will look like. He doesn’t want them to fight in order to “save” their lives, especially in the face of fears about the future. He wants them to “lose” their lives by loosening their grip on anxiety.
How about you? Where do you see anxiety dragging you down? The next time you feel like you’re drowning in the quicksand of worry, try to relax and focus on Jesus and his plans for you today. His first coming launched a revolution of love and mercy. It built a solid foundation that can keep you from drowning. What’s even better, this solid foundation will grow ever stronger with every act of faith and trust you make.
So lean back into the Lord and let him draw you onto solid ground.
“Lord, help me to rest in your presence today. I want to let go of fear and doubt.”
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