Jim Burns Homeword Daily Devotional for Parenting and Christian Family

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HomeWord - May 2, 2007

How Will You Rest? 
This devotional was written by Kelly McFadden

“If clouds are full of water, they pour rain upon the earth. Whether a tree falls to the south or to the north, in the place where it falls, there will it lie.”    Ecclesiastes 11:3

After living in England for a year, I was finally flying home. I decided to fly standby on an earlier flight from Heathrow to Los Angeles.  I presented my standby request to the gate representative, and watched as the room began to fill with other passengers. 

After an hour, they began boarding the plane and calling standby passengers on board.  I watched as not just one, but a dozen people were called ahead of me.  The room was nearly empty and the flight was loaded.  About five minutes before take off, my name was called.  A huge wave of relief rushed over me.  I was on.

What frustrates me, though, is that I spent probably 24 hours stressing over whether or not I would get on this flight.  As a result, I was short with my husband as he helped me pack.  I was rude to the taxi driver because I felt stressed and in a hurry.  I never smiled at anyone walking into the terminal because all I could think about was me. 

Perhaps you have things like this in your own life as well.  Areas you stress about, get angry over and worry about that you have absolutely no control over.   Whether it’s cancelled or delayed flights, a rainstorm when you planned an outdoor event, waiting in line at the checkout counter, a restaurant not serving you as quickly as you would like, or something else.  Solomon knew that there was a lot in life that was out of his control.  If the clouds are full of water, then it will rain.  If they’re not, it won’t.  If they have a seat, I will get on the flight.  If they don’t, I won’t. 

It is easy to get caught up in the moment and panic as you try to control everything going on around you.  But there is great wisdom in what Solomon is saying.  Sometimes you just need to go with the flow.  There are things in our life, in fact most things in our life, over which we have no control.  What we do control is how we react.  Will we be short with a waiter because our food isn’t perfect or will we explain kindly our need?  Will we be rude to others because our flight has been cancelled, or will we be able to take a deep breath and remember that where a tree falls, it falls?.

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1. What areas in your life get you the most out of sorts and cause you to stress over or react negatively to situations you can’t control?

2. What can you do ahead of time to help make sure you react in a way God would want you to?


Ecclesiastes 11:1-5; Phil 2:5; 1 Peter 3:8

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