Sonia Falaschi-Ray’s March Diary article February 18, 2016Posted by nicholastufton in The Diary Monthly letter.
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Regret and Anxiety
‘We crucify ourselves between two thieves: regret for the past and fear of the future.’ (Fulton Oursler)
Our contemplation of the future says, ‘What if this happens?’ ‘What if it doesn’t happen?’
The past says, ‘If only I’d done this; if only I hadn’t done that’. When Jesus asked people to follow him, he meant now, from this moment on. A man asked if he could first go and bury his father, to which Jesus replied, ‘Let the dead bury their dead’. A metaphor for the past taking care of itself. He also insisted that we shouldn’t worry about the future. Now is the only time we have available to affect things.
Jesus said (I paraphrase), ‘Don’t worry about your life, what you’ll eat or drink, or about what you’ll wear. Isn’t life more than food, and the body more than clothing? Look at the birds of the air; they don’t do a day’s work* and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Aren’t you of more value than they? And can any of you by worrying add a single hour to your life-span?… God knows you need these things. But strive first for the kingdom of God and his righteousness, live mercifully, graciously and justly; and all these things will be given to you as well.’
‘So don’t worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will bring worries of its own. Today’s trouble is enough for today.’
Jesus was crucified between two thieves. One mocked Jesus, demanding that he save them; the other rebuked the first, saying that they were being justly punished for their crimes, unlike Jesus, and he asked Jesus to remember him when he came into his heavenly kingdom, which Jesus promised to do.
Through his resurrection, Jesus has promised all of us the opportunity to enter the kingdom of heaven, where there will be no regret and no anxiety.* He asks us to start by making this earth a little more like the heaven we hope for. We can only do that today.
[* I paraphrase.]
Sonia (07747 844265)