I'm thankful for dishwashers.
When I was young, I had dishwashing duty. For a time, our dishwasher broke and my older brother and I would hand wash dishes each night by hand. No fun. We celebrated when we got a new dishwasher, but everything has a downside...
As technology advances, things become more efficient, but often there's a price tag. Have you ever started the dishwasher and then realized you need to put more stuff in? You quickly open the dishwasher to halt the process.
The content needs changing.
Our brains aren't that different. With years and years of survival evolution, those squishy things in our skulls are trained to sniff out a bad situation and get us out. That information is logged away, so if similar circumstances arise we're that much quicker.
This is useful for running away for bears. But not so much for trusting God.
The other day, I was chatting with a friend. We started talking about "buttons" we have that send our brains into a negative spiral. Money, feeling behind professionally, frustration in relationships came up for us. Much like a dishwasher, one button is pressed and a whole system is activated. Feeling insecure in a relationship leads to ten minute of self-loathing and over-analyzing. Concern about rent can speed the heart rate within seconds.
The efficiency has become efficiently destructive.
My friend and I talked about how important it is to bring awareness to those buttons. On the fly, in real life we need good strategies for yanking open that dishwasher and rearranging what's inside before the process has run its full course.
For me, finding a meditation practice has been a crucial way to see my thoughts from a distance. This helps me be aware during the chaos of real life. When I notices those buttons, I stop and breath. I give it some space.
I'm convinced the more space we create in these areas, the more God's presence can flood in. Is this not why Jesus speaks of worry and bitterness? These two things have such an amazing ability to hijack our brains.
I wonder what are your buttons?
Jesus, thank you for reminding us how silly it is the worry and how destructive it is to stay in a state of bitterness. Grace me with awareness of those "buttons" that cause me to spin out of control. I pray for more and more of your presence. Amen.