“A blip? Do you have any idea what I deal with each day? How dare you!” In my mind I can already hear the frustration that I would belittle such a painful experience –perhaps a lifetime of painful experiences into a blip. But stay with me for a minute.
Over a year ago a friend recommended the video below of Francis Chan speaking about how long our life is–our eternal life. And, in comparison, just how small, how insignificant time-wise our life here on earth really is. And many months later, I still recall this video and spiritual reminder when times get tough.
Take a moment to watch now… (If you don’t see a video, click here)
If you were unable to watch the video, Mr. Chan has a rope that goes around an auditorium and he explains that the rope signifies our eternal life–so it actually never ends. At the end he holds, there is a small piece of red tape. And that represents our life. (For those of us with illness, it should be easy to see “red tape” signifying our life because we put up with a lot of it, right?)
So, think for a moment of what you are going through today that is so tough. Would it even be on that piece of red tape that may represent 60-80 years. If you have recently lost a loved one, had a major surgery, or even had a baby, surely there will be a little mark on that tape, your timeline.
But what is keeping you up at 2 AM worrying? The possible side effects of a new medication? The fact that you are going to have to find a new doctor? That your car needs new engine brackets for $1300? That your child hates math and refuses to try to learn anything this summer? (Not that I would know about these.)
Are these worries, these huge ordeals you are experiencing, even going to show up on your little piece of red tape?
As the little things overwhelm me, I have returned to Mr. Chan’s perspective many times. I have no trouble actually surrendering over the big stresses in my life to God. But the little ones, well, He wants those too. If you have given your heart over to Christ, your life is infinite. And only about “an inch” of our timeline is our entire life here on earth.
I hope this comforts you as it has me.
Prayer: God, the little things all seem like such big things in my life when they are all packed together. Help me keep perceptive on both the little ones and the big ones and hand them all over to You consistently. Thank You for bearing my burdens, Amen.
About the author:
Lisa Copen is the founder of Rest Ministries and she lives in San Diego with her husband and son. She is gradually learning how to balance motherhood, family, illness, and ministry, but she still knows it will be a lifetime lesson. You can see the books she has written, including, Why Can’t I Make People Understand? at the Rest Ministries shop.
Do you allow the stresses in your life to get to you? Even if everyone tells you that you are handling the, well, do you still long for more peace at the Lord’s feet than weeping? How can this perspective help you cope better?
Here is Francis Chan talking about how short our life really is here on earth.