The girl stood on the rolling deck as the storm raged around her. The rain came hard and fast, the waves rolled into mountains and the lightning streaked across the sky. Suddenly, she was thrown overboard. She frantically started searching for something to grab hold of and managed to find the anchor chain. She thought to herself that if she could just hold on, then she could make it through. However, what she didn't think about as the storm raged on was that anchor was only pulling her down. She was wearing a life vest, but she couldn't get it out of her mind that she needed to hold onto the anchor.
I was thinking the other day about how all to often we find ourselves holding onto an anchor, a weight that is only pulling us down. I find myself holding onto some fear or thought that does nothing more than hold me in one spot and drag me under. I feel like I have to hold on or I will drown. But the ridiculous thing about the situation is that I am wearing a life jacket, and if I would just let go of the anchor, I would float to the surface and be able to take a breath.
The anchor is my desire to control and understand things. I get some fear in my head and then I think and think and think about it because I have it in my mind that I need to understand it and then it will go away. Or I think and think about it because I feel a need to be in control of it. But fear and worry aren't rational and they can't be controlled, so this only leads to sinking, and gasping for breath as the weight of the anchor pulls me down.
The life jacket is trusting in the One who holds my life in His hand. I need to realize that the way out of my struggle is not figuring the problem out, or beating it into submission, it is simply letting it go and allowing the life jacket of faith and trust in Jesus take me to the surface.
It says in Proverbs 3:5-6
"Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge Him, and He will make your paths straight."
I like this verse and use it a lot. It points out that Trusting in the LORD means that I don't actually need to understand or be able to control the situation, I just have to trust Him.
Holding onto the anchor is only going to keep you in one spot, and it may even drown you. But because of Jesus we have a life vest and as soon as you get the guts to let go of the anchor you will find yourself floating up to a breath of air. The trick is to not grab the anchor again. I'm pretty good at that. I let go, get a breath, and think to myself, "Oh this is nice." But my brain is a creature of habit and it tends to want to go back to what it's used too. As the storm rages you might find yourself wanting to stay by the sinking ship, but it's ok. The life vest is fool proof. You just have to lean back into it and let it hold you up.
“You must learn to let go. Release the stress. You were never in control anyway.” ~Steve Maraboli