Sometimes in life we get too wrapped up in our daily problems. I forgot to get the mail! I need to pick her up from school! Where did I put my keys? If you’re anything like me, some tiny little problems can turn into overblown dramas. They will grow so big that they occupy all of our time, mind, and heart. We become so involved in the things right in front of us that we forget to see the big picture! I will shamefully describe one of the more recent times this has happened to me.
I am currently studying abroad and staying with a host family. They are the sweetest couple, if a bit strict. The woman especially, is probably the most neat and organized person in the world! I remember one day coming home from classes feeling absolutely exhausted, I looked like a deflated balloon. I trudged into my room, threw my things aside and dropped in bed like a rock. The next morning I woke up rested and refreshed but discovered to my horror that I had forgotten to take off my make-up! There were black and red smudges on the otherwise pristine sheets. I was freaking out, my heart raced and in a hurry I tiptoed to the bathroom, I grabbed some toilet paper and a little soap. I began to scrub furiously and reciting prayers with every movement. Finally, the stains began to fade, until they were no longer there! I let out a huge sigh of relief.
What’s wrong with this picture? It took up every part of my mind and left me in a pit of worry and anxiety. For fifteen minutes I thought of absolutely nothing else but what was right in front of me, the smudges of make-up. Now you might say, she exaggerated. It’s just a tiny little stain! I have to admit it as well, I reacted as if the building was on fire or as if there was a snake in my bed. The curious thing is, for fifteen minutes, this little problem enveloped my life. Now how often does it happen to most of us that we concentrate all of our time and energy on minuscule problems? How often do we take a step back and put everything in perspective? Let’s imagine a bigger problem than the make-up, how about breaking up with someone? How about passing a final exam? How about working towards a promotion? If you think about it from a human’s point of view, these obstacles are tall and terrifying. They tower over the mightiest of humans.
How about we see these situations from God’s point of view ? In his infinite omnipotence, he looks down on us, all 7.125 billion of us. He sees our everyday struggles. He notices our interactions with other people and the daily snags that arise from a normal day. In truth however, I believe He sees his beloved sons and daughters. He gives us life, He gives us blessings we do not deserve, He showers the Earth with love, and then He takes back the life He has given us. Even though we are nothing compared to Him, even though we are the size of ants, God pays attention to us. He is anticipating the day when we will join Him in heaven. What do we do in response? We keep our gaze fixed on the ground, on what matters only temporarily. For Him, time is nothing, He is infinite, He is the creator of time! For God, material riches are nothing, He can create or destroy them in the blink of an eye! For God, all that matters is that from the moment we are born to the moment we die, we keep our sights set on heaven. That we never lose sight of who we belong to, of where we come from and where we must go back to. We tend to forget that our lives last less than a lit match in the eyes of God.
That is why it’s important to take a step back at least once a day and think, truly think, “Is what I’m doing at this very moment leading me to GOD?” If the answer is yes, then please continue! If the answer is no, you might want to rethink the activity you are engaged in. Act on straightening your path quickly, as we do not have much time on this earth. If you ever feel stressed, depressed, angry, or lonely about a situation, take a step back. Think a bit about the grand scheme of things, will this matter in twenty years? Forty? Is this problem as big as it seems? If the problem or obstacle or facing seems terrifying, you might want to consider asking the one person that can help you out, the One that sees it as a tiny little blip, you might want to ask God. Ask Him about your decisions, ask Him about problems you are facing, ask Him about that person who is hurting you.
It is easier of we imagine it like this. Imagine that life is a maze, there is one entrance and one exit. You know if you reach the exit you will succeed! So there is no time for distractions. You start navigating this complicated maze and you realize that you have the help of a friend! He is standing over the maze and he can see everything, including your position and the exit. If it was me I would immediately ask my friend for some guidance, he knows where I should go! If I follow his advice I will be on the right path to the exit. Now isn’t it interesting to think that many people choose to not listen to their friend? They insist on doing it their way, they insist on bumping into the same corner and getting stuck.
Many of us go through life dismissing God and his advice. We try to navigate this maze by ourselves, not caring if our one true friend knows the answer and is ready to help us. We may even get stuck in front of a wall and start panicking because the wall is huge! How can we ever surpass it? How can I ever get into this college, get another job, forgive my brother, quit smoking, etc?
In summary, when life has got you down: 1. Put it all into perspective 2. Ask God for help and guidance 3. Listen to his advice! (He is only the most intelligent being in the universe after all)
See? Now does that parking ticket still seem like a big deal?