Without going into details, a few things convereged to let me know this would be stressful day:
- I already had a pretty packed schedule on the calendar for today before I even left town.
- There were two critical stratgic areas where decisions needed to be made, and it was apparent that I would be asked to commit upon my return. I needed to create time with my staff to prepare for this.
- I got several emails related to work product that was needed pronto. Knowong I would be in meetings all day made me wonder...when?
First, dozens of thoughts were running through my mind about the decisions and commitments that would be required. Finally, I decided to start writing those thoughts down so I wouldn't forget them. This didn't lower the stress, but it did make me feel more prepared.
Second, I was reading the book Beautiful Outlaw by John Eldredge.
As I read, I was struck by the person - and personality - of Jesus. Eldredge does a wonderful job of walking through the Gospel narrative and showing how rich the portrait being painted of Christ really is. His motive? To me it was to inspire those of us who follow Jesus to love him more.
And finally, knowing the day that I was facing, last night I asked a good friend to pray for me as it unfloded.
It was a tough day. It was intense. It was fast-moving and full of spirited conversations. But you know what I discovered? The God I was reading about on the plane had more than enough grace to get me through such a day. I picked up a theme phrase from my pastor last year that I think about often. For me, my goal each day is "Love Jesus, love people, and try not to do anything stupid."
Believe me, I went in to today really focused on the third goal. But my readings from yesterday, helped me accomplish it by fixing my mind more on the first one. I reminded myself throughout the day that if I'll just do that, he would help me with the others.
And he did. I believe he knew that I needed that book. And I needed to make those notes. And I needed Clark praying for me. God is so good, and he is more than enough.
Even for days like today.