by Deacon Jean Gilberte
In the first paragraph of the gospel of Matthew, Jesus tells us NOT TO WORRY. Then he goes on to tell us that ‘God knows all that we need.’ Do we trust that God will provide for what we do need? I think that is our biggest question. Do we trust God to know what is best for us?
There are people who worry very little and some worry quite a lot. There are even people who worry about everything. There are also some of us who are worried because they don’t worry when something happens. Is there anyone in this room who does not worry? Is there anyone who is willing to say out loud what they are worried about with no judgment from anyone?
If you are one who worries, please don’t put yourself down for it. Paul, in the first reading, said to not past judgment on ourselves.
In the work that I do (I am a healing practitioner….when asked, I do Reiki for people who are in need). I noticed that people who come to see me because they are not feeling well are often stressed by some form of worry. Worrying creates exhaustion in people. Just last week, I slipped from trusting God and became worried. Of course, my blood pressure went up immediately. So what did I do at that moment?
I sat down and asked God to help me to let go. I took some deep breaths, and every time I let the air out, I let my body relax. After around ten minutes, my blood pressure went back down. Jesus knew 2 thousand years ago that worrying was not healthy. Can you imagine how long that is, and we still haven’t learned how to let go and relax.
God wants us to flourish like the lilies or the flowers that will soon start to grow as spring is approaching. I have rose bushes by my front walkway. God provides the water and the sun and I make sure that good energy surrounds my home. These roses grow so big and they flower from early spring until December. This is without my watering during the summer and without any fertilizer. God really does provide for them.
I was one who grew up doubting myself. About 25 years ago, my youngest son encouraged me to take art class because he was taking the class. He was very wise at a young age and saw some potential in me that I did not see. I didn’t want to because I was afraid I would embarrass myself by doing what I knew and that was drawing stick people. I eventually did take the class. The first painting I did shocked me because it was beautiful. I didn’t know how it happened but it did.
At the time, my mom’s wish was to have a painting of the Trinity (God, Jesus and the Holy Spirit.) I promised her I would paint it for her. My art teacher agreed that she would guide me so I decided to try. A few months into the painting, my teacher informed me that she was moving to California. I was upset that the painting for my mom was not even a quarter done. I brought the unfinished canvas home and placed it on my easel and there it stayed for 2 months because I was afraid that I would find out that I really wasn’t good at painting. My mom would ask about the painting and her birthday was coming up. One night, I prayed to God to please help me to give my mom the painting she so desired as she was such a prayerful woman. I sat at my easel with 5 paint brushes in my hand and I asked, maybe pleaded for my Angels to help me finish the picture as I did not know how to paint people. Somehow my hands just painted non stop. I finished that painting early that morning. My mom cried when I gave it her. My dad now has it hanging on the wall by his bed. Because I fully trusted and let go of the fears around painting, my mother received her gift; somehow at that moment with the paint brushes in my hands, I knew God was going to help me.
Now when I have moments of doubt, I remember how God is always with me as God is always with each and everyone of us. I hope all of us remember how important we are to God no matter what we we’ve done in the past. Please trust in God’s never ending love for us. Remember what Jesus said, “Do not worry.” God knows all about our needs and we need to trust that it will be done.