|image from Christianity Today|
This past Christmas my brother and I were both given a daily-reading book taken from the writings of George MacDonald, a Scottish Christian writer and minister from the 1800s. (The book is Consuming Fire, and 100% of the royalties from it go to the ALS Therapy Development Institute in Cambridge, MA.)
I don't have a great track record with this sort of book, but here we are in May, and I'm still going strong! That's because MacDonald (a huge influence on C. S. Lewis) is overflowing with unique perspectives, powerful insights, wonderful images, and just plain interesting interpretations of the scriptures.
And because I've been struck so often and so profoundly by things I've read there over the last few months, I thought I might begin to share some of his words here on the blog.
I wanted to start with a simple little passage that nevertheless seemed to jump off the page, sit down, and stare at me from an uncomfortably close distance.
The care that is filling your mind at this moment, or but waiting till you lay the book aside to leap upon you - that need which is no need, is a demon sucking the spring of your life. If you say that yours is a reasonable and unavoidable care, I ask if there is something about it which you must do at this very moment. If not, then you are allowing it to usurp the place of something that is at this moment required - the greatest thing that can be required: to trust in the living God, whose will is your life. (Consuming Fire, April 22nd)
Later on (April 25th), he warns us about opening "your windows to the mosquitoes of care," whose buzzing drowns out the voice of the Eternal in our lives.
That thing you can't stop worrying about, is there something you need to do about it at this very moment? No? Then quit making excuses, offering rationalizations. "Cast your cares on the Lord, and he will sustain you" (Ps 55:22). "Give all your worries and cares to God, for he cares about you" (1 Pet 5:7).
Give your worries to God, quit holding on to them, because they're really holding on to you. They're the cares of the world that choke the gospel out of our lives (Matt 13:22); they're draining the spring of your life. They're distracting you in this moment - while you're looking at this screen, or just waiting for you to finish reading - they're distracting you from trusting in the living God.
And that's what life is really all about.