There I was, innocently watching a silly sitcom on television, when all of the sudden one of the characters spouts a line that not only causes a lilt of laughter, but also sets the path for God to remind me of something He is forever teaching me.
One of the characters was anxiously trying not to take sides when two of his friends were in a disagreement.. He was trying to avoid conflict. His character worked hard to keep both friends happy and unaware he was seeing them both. While this did lead to lots of comedic moments, the poor guy was overwhelmed with anxiety. He finally admitted to one he was spending time with the other friend. The response he received was both a relief and a surprise. It did not matter to him if he spent time with the other friend. That is when he said it, the thing that stuck in my head long after the show’s laugh track subsided…. “Well, looks like we slaughtered a pig and no one wanted bacon!” at which point he simply turned and walked away as if all was well.
“Looks like we slaughtered a pig and no one wanted bacon!”
I love this phrase. This is a great visual for the wastefulness of our effort sometimes. We can create a mess of things when it is not necessary. I can easily recall spending time and energy fretting over things I had little control over, only to later realize my anxiety was in vain. I cannot count the times I attempted to resolve a personal problem on my own and later regretted not letting God lead me. I would love to have back the hours I wasted on worry. I have done a lot of “pig slaughtering” only to find there was no need, no one wanted “bacon”.
The next day, as I sat in church, this same phrase swept through my mind as I found myself reading Matthew 6:34 “Therefore do not be anxious for tomorrow; for tomorrow will care for itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.” Is my anxiety little more than slaughtering pigs when no bacon is needed? It did not take long for the words of my mom to echo in my heart as well…for as long as I can remember she has quoted Phil 4:6&7 to me, “Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all comprehension, shall guard your hearts and mind in Christ Jesus.” Today I am reassessing my slaughterhouse. May we all be challenged once more to lay down the burden and fruitlessness of anxiety, and resisit the urge to “slaughter a pig when no one wants bacon”!