I have true confessions to make, and I would like it to remain just between you and me. I have a mistress and I’m in love with her. Yes, I took this mistress a long, long time ago. She consumes my thoughts and plagues my time. I just can’t get her out of my head. She has been with me so long I can’t even imagine life without her. Our meetings have become more than just habitual; we now seem to be one. She actually seems to be everywhere I go. Her name is, “Uneasiness.”
Uneasiness is a “made up, pretty” word for being anxious. To be “ill at ease” is so much gentler than to call it the sin of ANXIETY. Like lipstick on a pig! But however you paint it, at the end of the day, it’s just sin!
My anxiousness can be palpable. I sometimes feel it in my chest or notice it as shortness of breath, but the worst is when I don’t feel it at all yet someone with me does. To be caught off guard and have it pointed out, yikes! I then have to stop, get still, and focus to see I’m in it. But when I do realize it, it’s like a vibration in my chest, hence an anxious heart.
Anxiety is fear. And fear is faith in something other than God. And without faith in God, it is impossible to please Him. So anxiety separates me from my consciousness of God and leaves me floundering in a soup of unrest.
Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation,
by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.
I was reading the other day The Practice of the Presence of God. In it Brother Lawrence says that he “gave himself no further uneasiness after releasing himself to God.” Brother Lawrence’s course was leaning on His beloved. He did everything for the love of God. He knew the wretchedness of man but walked leaning rather than striving.
This is a quote from his book’s introduction, which speaks about how to practice the presence of God: His (Brother Lawrence) one single aim was to bring about a conscious personal union between himself and God, and he took the shortest cut he could find to accomplish it. The result can best be described in his own words: “If I dare use this expression, I should choose to call this state the bosom of God, for the inexpressible sweetness which I taste and experience there.”
Brother Lawrence called this place the bosom of God. John the disciple as well lay on Jesus’ breast. And I believe the secret of both these men was in leaning and their proximity to the heart of God.