February 26, 2016

Emmaus Walk / Debra Tomaselli

Don’t be afraid to surrender your problems to God

Debra TomaselliI tugged the blanket up over my shoulder, rolled over, and fluffed my pillow. I shut my eyes, but it didn’t matter. Sleep didn’t come.

It was dark … middle of the night dark. My mind was tossing and turning more than I was.

Cancer had me wrestling with uncertainty. What if I didn’t get better? What if I couldn’t return to work? What if the money runs out? What about my health insurance?

The prognosis was good, but what if the cancer returned?

Please God, I prayed. Help me to trust in you.

But the fearful thoughts persisted.

Had I lived my life according to God’s plan? Should I have written that book? Gone on that mission trip? Or started a foundation for the poor?

God, have I done enough for you?

I grabbed my pillow and buried my face in it, hoping to stop the thoughts.

But minutes later, I rolled over and glanced at my husband’s sleeping form. What about him? How would all this impact my beloved spouse?

Finally, I tossed the covers aside and, in the dark of the night, arose.

I slipped into the living room. Moonlight streamed in through the French doors, and illuminated the familiar surroundings.

Stepping into the peaceful setting, I paused to absorb the tranquility.

Then, drawn by the moonlight, I headed to the front door and opened it.

Outside, the scene was peaceful.

Moonbeams illuminated the neighborhood, covering the adjacent homes and yards with a soft glow.

It was quite a contrast to the flurry of activity that took place during the day.

There was no traffic, no movement. Cars were parked in driveways. Nobody was jogging, riding bicycles or mowing yards. There were no barking dogs, no howling cats. Light dew blanketed the lawns.

I smiled, captivated by the serene setting.

Standing there on that doorstep, enveloped in a cool breeze, I looked up.

The night was crisp and clear.

The sky was covered with stars, indeed it looked as though all of creation was visible. I identified the Big and Little Dipper. I stood there and observed the universe, created by God alone.

Suddenly, I felt a great connection coming from the skies, moving though me, grounding me to the Earth on which I stood. I can’t explain it, but I felt strengthened.

In that moment, I realized how small a speck we are in a much bigger picture. I understood how little our problems are, how little our breath of life is, in the big scheme of things.

And yet, we’re important enough for God himself to be interested in us.

I remembered St. Augustine’s words, that God loves each one of us, as if there were only one of us. I recalled the many times in my life that something miraculous saved the day.

With that, I surrendered my problems to God himself. After all, if he could create such beauty on this Earth and throughout this universe, I knew I could trust him to create such serenity within my heart … no matter what happens.

And I went back to sleep for the night … and every other night since then.

(Debra Tomaselli writes from Altamonte Springs, Florida. She can be reached at dtomaselli@cfl.rr.com.)

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