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Saturday, August 27, 2016

Why When Everything Matters, Nothing Matters

Everything matters in life when we care, but there comes a point where that sort of modus operandi no longer works.  It involves too many risks, it takes too much energy, and burns too many bridges.  And, like with busyness, caring too much about too many things runs us ragged, not just spiritually, but behaviourally, and in our compassion fatigue, we find ourselves on a slippery slope to emotional despair.
The encouragement in this is the opposite is also true.
The fewer things we actually care about, the more we can authentically care.  So in today’s world where there are so many things we can and should care about, we may feel guilty for not caring.  But wisdom decrees a choice still needs to be made.
Some things are worthy of our care,
other things we choose to care about are not.
I’ve found personally, a great awakening in this fact, that the more I don’t care, the better off I am for caring most about the things that really count.  The less scattered I am, the more solidified I’m able to be to care for the things that truly matter.  The less I’m bothered, the more I’m safe within myself for others.
This is about moving from caring about what people think of me to caring more attentively about what people think; from stressing too much about my anxieties and insecurities to trusting these, through acceptance, to God’s care; from worrying about the future to knowing God cares and, in letting go, trusting His plan, because I can do no other wiser thing than to accept His plan; from grieving about my circumstances to mourning for those suffering much more than I presently am.
This is not about caring less, per se, rather than it’s about caring about the right things in the right way, for the right reasons.
***
When care is undiluted,
attention is focused,
so care has good effect,
and intimacy is experienced.
The truth is when everything matters, nothing matters.  But when we can surrender that all-encompassing passion, honing it in the acceptance that says “I can’t control everything, nor even more than a few small but important things,” all that passion comes to be funnelled into something useful — a tempered passion enshrined in humility that knows there are always limits.  Limits for our good.
Those small yet important things that we have control over are our expectations and attitudes.  And although they’re small, they’re crucially important, for our attitudes and expectations will either reconcile or ruin us.
© 2016 Steve Wickham.

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