Thursday, August 9, 2007

The worm as a role model?

I love to laugh. Many times being able to see the funny side of things breaks the tension. The Bible records that Jesus wept. I think he also laughed because that is a quality of Soul that he must have possessed in abundance. I read something this morning that made me laugh and I'll share it with you.

One of my favorite things is gardening. I won't even get into the unusually wet weather we have experienced lately. Not at all funny, really. But I still love gardening and hope to get serious about again come September. The author of the article I was reading also loved gardening and hers was blessed with an abundance of earthworms. She was amazed that such a soft, limp creature could make its way through such a solid world. It must have been slow going! From a human standpoint one might think impatience or frustration perfectly natural. Especially if a worm could compare itself to another animal, say an eagle. Gives you pause.

Well, Mrs. Eddy mentions worms in her writings. She says: "Patience is symbolized by the tireless worm, creeping over lofty summits, perservering in its intent." Maybe the worm isn't such a strange rode model after all. How funny to envision a worm as the subject of the advice given in Hebrews 12:1. "Let us lay aside every weight, and the sin that does so easily beset us, and let us run with patience the race that is set before us."

When we pray about challenges, it is not eternal human effort that is asked of us. It is spiritual effort, a willingness to change our thought about something, a mental shift. One summer, when I was employed as a school librarian, finances were tight and I was about to face six weeks without an income. I was feeling quite concerned about this but there didn't seem to be much I could do about it. I only needed a job for those six weeks, no one would hire me for that short a time. I couldn't really see applying for work knowing I would go back to full time employment in September. It was frustrating and I was thinking about it all the time. Then I decided to pray about it instead, to know that there was a solution and God would know exactly how I could use my talents to bless and be blessed. I just needed to trust and be patient. Once I began to pray along those lines, joyfully anticipating giving of His gifts, I felt at peace and the fear left. Two days before the end of July and our summer school program, I got a call from a principal of another school. He was desperate. Their librarian had been called to a family emergency in another state. Her order of hundreds of books had just arrived and she was going to be away for the entire month of August so those books would not be checked in, cataloged, and put on the shelves before school opened. Was there any way I could be available to help out? You bet! I drove over the next day, he handed me the keys for the library and went on vacation. But before he left, he gave me a check... for the exact amount I would have been paid for the month during the school year.

I worked patiently all month, laying aside the weight of worry, and rejoicing that I was seeing the very clear evidence of Love's right answer for any problem. While waiting patiently on God may seem like a slow process, you can trust in His lovingkindness and provision. Incidently, my favorite definition for that work is expecting good calmly.

Go in peace.

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