(Click here for a video of John reading this Catch.)
Returning from our fact-finding trip to Colorado, Chandler and I did something we like to do frequently on these trips together, we visited a national park in southern Arizona named Chiricahua (pronounced cheery-cowa) National Monument, after the Chiricahua Apache whose revered leader, Cochise, waged a long war with the U.S. government in the late 1800s. Chandler was excited about this visit for a couple of reasons: the beauty and power of the many natural rock formations, and the opportunity to “bomb” a long hill on his downhill skateboard. It turned out to be a perfect place for it. This park has a 7-mile paved road running through it that was uphill most of the way in, and then you turned around at the top and went back down. It was that downhill return Chandler was interested in.
I was quite nervous about this. The road back had some pretty steep sections and I worried about him not being able to stop. Luckily it was late in the day, and there was no traffic coming up the hill, and hardly any going down. Chandler assured me he was fine and I would be driving right behind to monitor him. Great, I thought, I’ll have a perfect view when he crashes or goes off the edge.
There is a circular turnaround at the top and as soon as he got his skateboard out Chandler took off to warm up. When He didn’t come back around for a while I started to wonder, Did he start down without me? So I drove around the circle twice. No Chandler. I couldn’t imagine him starting down without me; but what if he did and was hoping I would catch up with him? So I started down, growing more and more worried as I went, expecting to come around a sharp corner and see him splayed out on the pavement. I was in a dilemma. If he’s in front of me and I go back, he’ll get even further away from me. But what if he’s waiting at the top and thinks I left without him? I kept on expecting to see him around the next curve. Finally I felt I had to go back. There were restrooms at the top. Maybe he was in there when I circled around looking for him.
On the way back up the hill, I finally ran into Chandler coming down. Turns out he was checking out another road at the top when I went around looking for him. He had waited as long as he could and then figured I had gone on without him. So we met in the middle and Chandler finally got his trip down the mountain. At least he went until his legs were getting shaky; he knew when to quit.
Looking back on this experience, I realize two things didn’t serve me well. 1) worry; and 2) expecting the worst. Worry only makes you up tight and unable to think creatively. Worry also leaves God out of it. God and worry don’t mix well. God is either in control or He is not. Expecting the worst also doesn’t help with one’s blood pressure, or with thinking of creative solutions. God is not the author of the worst, and even if He lets the worst happen, there will be provision. God in charge changes everything. If you’re worrying or expecting the worst, you need to remember, God is in charge.