Tuesday, June 18, 2013

The Parking Situation

Several months ago, our pastor mentioned a woman he knew who was hyper aware of God's presence in her life.  For example, he said, when this woman went to the store and found a parking spot right by the door, she would say, "thank you Jesus, for this parking spot!"

The congregation laughed deprecatingly, perhaps thinking that was a little frivolous, or even ridiculous, to think that God would care about parking. 

Obviously, those folks don't have parking anxiety.

I, on the other hand, was nodding my head, thinking, "I do that, too."  Maybe not out loud, but I am seriously thanking God for providing a parking space for me.

As I have shared in the past, my parking anxiety has definitely affected my life.  I simply don't go places if I don't know what the parking situation will be.  It's not so much parking that is the problem--it's the worry that I won't be able to leave my parking place when the time comes.  'Cause as I've also shared, I'm not the best backer-upper.

But do you know what?  God doesn't want us to live in fear, and that's what anxiety is, plain and simple.  God doesn't want us to limit ourselves based on fear or anxiety or anything other than God's love. 

For God did not give us a spirit of cowardice,
but rather a spirit of power and of love and of self-discipline.
2 Timothy 1:7
 
My friends, I was a slave to parking anxiety, letting it tell me what to do, and what not to do.
 
And that's when I realized that God does care about parking.  Because God doesn't want me to be anxious about an . y . thing.  Nothing.  Not what I will eat, not what I will wear, not what tomorrow will bring, and certainly not where I will park.
 
“Therefore I tell you,
do not worry about your life,
what you will eat or what you will drink,
or about your body, what you will wear.
Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothing?"
Matthew 6:25
 
So I decided to claim God's promise--to live it out every day as it relates to my parking anxiety.
 
My friends, I stared to pray.  Each day, when I set out for a destination with an iffy parking situation, like say, my kids' school on the last day, or Dairy Queen right after lunch on a sunny 80 degree day, I ask God to prepare a parking space for me.
 
Do not worry about anything,
but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving
let your requests be made known to God. 
Philippians 4:6
 
And God has provided.  Every. Single. Time.
 
Now, sometimes, I will look at the spot, the spot that God has prepared for me, and think that God's got to be kidding.  Sure, I can get into it, but no way I'm getting back out.  But I stretch and I trust, and I do.
 
Frivolous?  Ridiculous?  I don't think so.  Because I've learned to trust God for that parking spot.  And if I can trust God to provide something as unimportant (in the grand scheme of things) as a parking spot, I know, beyond the shadow of a doubt, that God's going to take care of me on the big stuff.
 
My friends, what are you anxious about? What area in your life, big or small, do you need to trust to the Provider?  I challenge you to give it up to God today.  Right now, and as often as you need to.
 
And the peace of God,
which surpasses all understanding,
will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.
Philippians 4:7


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