Worried, Bothered and Anxious

I served 35 years in the Canadian Armed Forces so I have a bit of a predisposition to like things tidy and in order. My wife and I raised five children so you can just imagine how much fun I was to have around. Oh yes, did I mention . . . my wife is a saint. I’m getting a little better with the grandchildren now but there are undoubtedly some of my family members who might take exception to that statement.

One of our daughters who has a one year old daughter is staying at our place for a few days. Problem being that my daughter has a tendency to leave stuff all over the place. Nothing major, just little things like not tightening the lip on the coffee container or putting it back where it belongs, leaving pop cans in the sink or not putting my toothpaste back in the holder and not closing the top of the toothpaste tube. I could go on but I’m sure you catch my general drift. I’ve done real good, never said a word. Well . . . I might have mentioned it to my wife but absolutely nothing to my daughter and I’m pretty sure she wouldn’t be reading this. But these little “irregularities” bother me. Considering that I’m 74 years old now, the possibility that I will change my ways aren’t really great.

While driving to work today ( I only work part-time), it crossed my mind that during the run of a day there must be many times that I do things that go against how God likes things done. I’m pretty sure that His list with me would be a lot longer than mine with my daughter. I know in my heart that these little things shouldn’t really matter and considering how long suffering and patient God has been with me over the years, I probably shouldn’t even be thinking about them, let alone allowing them to bother me. Anyway, I made a mental note to try to lighten up a bit and make sure I didn’t allow these “irregularities” to affect her stay with us. And yes, I’ve prayed about it. Bottom line is that I love my daughter and her child is just outright adorable.

To add insult to injury, I go to my Bible reading and we’re in Luke, chapter 10. Guess what’s at the end of chapter 10? Yep, the narrative about Martha and Mary. Verses 41-42 in particular.

Luke 10:41-42 Amplified Bible (AMP)

“But the Lord replied to her, “Martha, Martha, you are worried and bothered and anxious about so many things; but only one thing is necessary, for Mary has chosen the good part [that which is to her advantage], which will not be taken away from her.”

Worried, bothered and anxious … but only one thing is necessary.

Someone might think that our Lord is trying to tell me something.

But only one thing is necessary, and what might that be in my “bothered” state? For me to let my daughter know that we are there for her and that she is loved, warts and all. Just like God demonstrates patience with me, time and time again.

I’d like to tell you that this doesn’t happen all that often but I would be lying. How quickly I can see the shortfalls of others and overlook my own. I’ll tell you, it’s scary. And, if I’m not mistaken, my problem is shared by many. What’s even scarier is Jesus talks about this all the time, getting the log out of our own eye before we start trying to get the twig out of someone else’s eye, forgive to be forgiven and being merciful because we have been given mercy.

My wife (she’s the saint) is always telling me not sweat the small stuff. She’s right. In hindsight, I should have done a lot more of that, a lot more.

Just passing this on in case it might help someone.

Worthy is the Lamb! Blessings!


  1. The mess wouldn’t bother be half as much as the thoughtlessness. I really don’t like messes, but thoughtlessness bothers me far worse.

    However, your attitude, and finding the spiritual principal behind this situation, is awesome. You’re a good father.

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  2. You are doing well Bruce. I struggle as well with grand kids. But you read Luke? God set you up. When I have grand kids over I read Jonah or something for devotions…And ya, God still has a way of finding me.


  3. Yep, the Mary Me and the Martha Me are both there. The Martha Me comes out more when I have spent a good part of a day (or week) cleaning up clutter, only to find other people recreating it. Then I have to ask myself – why was I spending all that time doing something that, in the greater scheme of things, doesn’t really matter all that much?

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  4. You bring back memories, Bruce. Now, it is quiet, except for Jerry and he cannot make very much of a mess from a wheelchair. Blessings as you learn to leave these ~ children, grandchildren and the things of this world to the Lord.

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  5. I have to admit, when I saw that your Bible reading was about Mary and Martha, it was LOL!
    God has a sense of humor, I think. But, it’s the Martha in you which has made you a real defender of faith and truth. And I, for one, am thankful for your blog and your quest for truth. Blessings, Bruce!


    1. Hi Cindy, one of my other readers said that he thought God had set me up. Couldn’t really argue with him. And it wouldn’t be the first time! I think my exact words were “you’ve got to be kidding!” We’re all trying to lift one another up. Blessings to you and yours also! – Bruce

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  6. Wow Scripture speaks when we need it and sometimes its convicting! Can’t believe you were in the Army that long, that’s almost as long as I’ve been alive


    1. Hi Jim, Glad to see you finished all the prep work you needed to get done. I’m glad you’re still relatively young, you need the energy, what with all with dedicated work that you do. You’re right about scripture convicting. That was a zinger! I’m sure there’s more. BTW, you’re in my permanent prayer list now, actually you’ve been there for quite a while. Honoured to know you. God’s grace, love and blessings to you and yours and the work that you do for His glory. – Bruce

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