At the beginning of Lent I wrote about my intention to give up worry for Lent. I’ve noticed some setbacks already, but when I do I move my mind back to prayer, especially to the short, ancient prayer, “Lord Jesus, have mercy on me.” I’ve definitely been worrying less.
Will there be enough? This is a perennial worry for me. In fact, I have always had enough money to pay my bills. When I was supporting the family as a pastor and my husband, Karl, was in library school, there was only one two-week period where I wasn’t sure there would be enough–but it turned out I had simply forgotten to enter one of my paychecks. So in reality we had plenty. We’ve always had enough, and more than enough.
So the focus for worry about money is always the future. Now it shows up in this way: will there be enough when I retire, and for the rest of my life? Now, of course there is action I can take in the present that can help support me now and in the future. And, no one can guarantee what will happen with the economy. One paradox of the spiritual life is that letting go is essential, and God does call us to take action.
Perhaps the paycheck that I keep forgetting to enter is God’s loving care for me, now, for the rest of my life and forever. I trust that God will guide me about the choices I need to make about money – how to make it, spend it, save it and give it away. A practice I want to cultivate is reconciling the books with my conviction about this guidance. That is enough.
What is enough for you?