"But Mary treasured up all these things, pondering them in her heart."
Have you ever looked around at how wonderful things are, then found your brain retreating from the moment, almost afraid to go there with some strange feeling that if you enjoy it too much, the other shoe will drop and you'll lose it all? I don't know where that reaction comes from but it is a cycle I found myself in years ago. My mind would find something to be anxious about and move there almost against my will. Sometimes it was a real concern, like financial troubles due to unemployment that most certainly could force a loss of our home if things didn't change. Other times it was over nonsense, such as a fear that my perfectly healthy child could develop some terrible disease and die, because I heard on the news about some theoretical deadly flu or a type of cancer I didn't know existed until yesterday.
Seeing the verse above, and knowing from history that Christ came as a child to one day suffer and die, I wonder if Mary knew back then that that day would come? The prophesies foretold these things, so she may have, but so many, including His disciples, were in shock over the crucifixion. The scripture doesn't directly tell us whether she knew or not, and I don't think the verse above provides the answer. She may have known, yet was still able to treasure the moment. There is a reason this beautiful woman was chosen to have such an honor. Mary had tremendous faith in God, which was why she could walk the path He chose for her with such joy.
With this in mind, I am starting a new theme goal for posting on Tuesdays. Tuesday Treasures are my moment to remember to treasure up all these things and ponder them in my heart. A few years ago I realized that my hesitance to fully treasure the moment for fear of an unknown future, not only robbed me of that treasure, but it did nothing to prepare me for some unknown tragedy. Since then I have often had to remind myself to rejoice in life's treasures and firmly slam the door on any thought that would rob me of a joyful moment. Now and then life's fears still win out for a moment, but rarely for long before I am reminded to look at how very many things I have to treasure up and ponder in my own heart.
Back when I realized I had a problem allowing myself to rejoice in the moment, I had a nice suburban home and a husband with a decent job with benefits, a garden area, local stores with organic options, a wheat grinder, and a basement with bulk food storage. Today I live in a 20 year old converted school bus. We do not have another home and we cannot afford to replace the bus if it falls apart. At the moment we are without health insurance and dental insurance, despite having a daughter with past dental problems and the occasional health need, unable to afford all the perfectly pure foods that promise to keep you healthy and strong, which leaves some risk to our long-term health. Additionally, our very livelyhood depends on every member of the family being healthy. We must maintain strong voices, reflexes, and we cannot afford even temporary injuries. Our instruments must also stay in decent condition, without the benefit of quality maintenance from the best lutheries. Add one final worry no one wants: Our income depends directly on people "liking" us. Essentially, we are highly vulnerable and our whole world could go spinning out of control.
I count all of this as joy. Never before have I had the privilege of seeing God's providential care so up close in my life. This doesn't mean something won't go out of control. Our first week on the road we had major upsets that could have left me crumpled in a ball, yet here we are, 14,000 miles later, with so very many treasures to ponder in my heart. I do lose to the occasional anxiety attack or moment of fear, but I'm learning. It's a battle worth fighting.