I am on a journey, and I get off of the path frequently.

Not in an adventurous kind of way, but in an “I don’t need a leader, I can do this myself” sort of way. I know that I am better off when I trust Jesus to guide me, but I am bull-headed. Deep-down I know that I don’t know better than Jesus, yet my actions betray me. I act as if I do know better. I don’t always choose to walk in faith. I want to guide the way.

As I take off to set my own way, I walk smack into the primary sin that I struggle with in my life: Worry (which also comes across as stress, anxiety, and panic). As I wander off on my own to blaze a trail through the underbrush, I quickly find that it overwhelms me and threatens to choke the peace, joy, hope, and freedom from my life that Jesus so freely gives.

I have learned that I have to focus on trusting Jesus with this single moment. Then the next one and the next one. I am at my best when I live in the present moment side-by-side with Jesus. If I begin to think of everything that is coming up, I lose sight of him and get off of the path. Therefore I focus on one moment, one step, one breath—at a time.

As we begin a new year on this journey of life, I wrote a prayer to help us begin on the right foot. Actually, it is a great prayer for every day of the year. I offer it to you. If you struggle with worry and anxiety, perhaps my experience on this journey will help you, and the words of this prayer might resonate in your heart and mind.

Jesus. I find myself at the beginning of another year. I know that because you are with me, the journey of this year is filled with kingdom potential. However, I find myself mentally scanning the months to come and worrying about all of the things that might go wrong, and I leave the path you have cleared for me. Most of what I worry about is beyond my control and of my own creation. This causes me to approach this new year with anxiety and nervousness.
Jesus. It is difficult for me to give this year to you and follow you on the path. But I can choose to offer this moment to you. So I do. And I will seek to relinquish the next moment to you as well.
One breath,
one step,
one moment,
one second,
even one blink—at a time.
Take this moment I give you and make something beautiful of it. Take this step and lead me in your paths. Take this breath and breathe into me your life. Take this blink and grant me the vision to see the world as you see it and the future that you have in store. Take this second and consecrate it to yourself. I give it all to you—one at a time.
In this way, I will allow you to build a year in my life that surpasses my wildest imagination and expectations. I can do nothing. But with you, all things are possible. Let’s do this!

You might want to check out my post entitled Firecrackers, Spiritual Disciplines, and the Kingdom of God to continue our journey together.

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