My New Goal

by:  Cris Corzine-McCloskey

It’s a sad day for the McCloskey household. This morning our oldest and most beloved dog, Pabu, could not walk. She’s usually such a tough girl. She is the alpha, ruling over the other dogs with an iron paw. But today she had to be carried out of bed and is currently resting on the couch, unable to get her back legs to work. We can no longer deny she has arthritis and needs medication. Seeing her like this breaks our hearts.

Both my parents just had birthdays. Another year older. My dad’s health took a turn last winter, and he is still fighting for a full recovery. Oh, how I wish I could freeze time and not let them get a minute older or ever suffer bad health, but I can’t.

All of these things, plus the mountain of tasks on my ever-expanding to-do list, tempt me to jump down the rabbit hole of anxiety. I am fighting hard not to over-think and analyze all this because as soon as I do, my peace will be gone.

One of my friends recently told me her husband paid her a fabulous compliment. He accused her of being an “under-thinker.” While she doubted he meant it as a compliment, she certainly took it as such. You see, she has a history of jumping down rabbit-holes and looking at worse-case scenarios. All of that led to her being depressed and anxious.

Evangelist extraordinaire, Dan Mohler, says analytical thinking, which is something we take such pride in, is not a blessing. He says God would never give us the ability to talk ourselves out of Him or out of being at peace. But that’s precisely what we do. We reason ourselves out of peace, and we pride ourselves on the process. We package it as disaster preparedness, so when that worst-case scenario happens, we will be prepared for it. But at what cost? I, for one, am tired of over-thinking and doomsday preparations.

I now have a new goal. I want to be an under-thinker. It sounds like absolute Nirvana! And I know how my friend got to this blissful state. She simplified her theology. She boiled it down to this, “Jesus loves me, this I know, for the Bible tells me so.”

Jesus, my friends, is perfect theology. He has to love you, He died for you. And if He loves you enough to die for you, it’s safe to assume He is an ever-present source of peace at all times. Including dog emergencies and aging parents.

When I am tempted to look down the road into my future, let me look no further than the fact that when hard days arrive, He will be there for me. Providing the grace and peace to get me through. In fact, it says in Psalm 139 that He “hems me in, behind and before, He has laid His hand upon me.” That sounds like a pretty safe place to be. He’s covering my past and going ahead of me into my future, and all the time has His nail-scarred hand of love on my life.

Today, I choose to enjoy my life. I’m going to go pet my dog, and relish in the fact that she is here, and such a source of joy for us. And truth be told, the Diva Dog is reveling in all this extra attention. This afternoon we are having lunch with my parents. We are going to celebrate those birthdays and soak up the pleasure of their company. They are Nathan and I’s favorite hang-out buddies. And if I get tempted to start analyzing anything in my day, I vow to repeat my new, under-thinker mantra, “Jesus loves me this I know.”