I strive to do well yet my striving often brings me grief and disappointment. When I train to run a marathon, I find myself striving to practice hard, only to become injured and unable to reach the starting line. In preaching, I strive to preach a perfect sermon, only to discover that I have frustrated myself and the congregation. Or when I rush to make a blog post and my wireless network crashes, I feel frustration. The constant hum of push, push, push, wears me down.
Last summer I was backpacking in the mountains, a trip I had anticipated for months. Yet I frequently found my mind striving and shifting to somewhere else. I found it extremely hard to simply BE in the moment. My mind kept jumping to some other place and time.
Is “push, push, push, strive, strive, strive” the center of the Christian gospel? Is constant striving to do more, to do better, and to do all, is that living by grace? Doesn’t God’s grace free me from such obsessive striving? Doesn’t God’s peace allow me to simply be in the present moment?
In my recent study of mindfulness training, one central is non-striving. Being able to accept what my limits are in body, mind and spirit has had a freeing aspect for me. Non-striving has been a word of grace for me. Below is a you-tube video that explains non-striving in a grace-filled way.
The peace of God which surpasses all human understanding guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus. Phil 4:7