I’ve been intrigued by the recent introduction of the “calming comfort blanket” by Sharper Image. I did a little research and found that the beginning price of $99 is for 10 pounds of calming comfort through the weighted blanket. The 25 pound blanket (weight increases in 5 pound increments) is $169. The commercial includes a statement that the weighted blanket “feels like someone holding me.”
I really am more fond of fluffy down comforting and don’t think I would find a weighted blanket appealing, in spite of its scientifically weighted microbeads. But the whole idea that our society needs tangible comforting by an inanimate object kind of troubles me.
I know the world is a scary place. Sometimes I’m as scared an anyone else. Global warming, wildfires, hurricanes, tornadoes. Devastating floods. Famines, epidemics, war. The threat of nuclear conflicts. A nation more and more divided through battles over immigration, nationalism, and politics. Constant rhetoric that I’m sure our God is not pleased with. It troubles me, too.
And then there are the more personal stressors. Illness, physical and mental. Grief and loss. Addiction. Finances. Worry about retirement income with a questionable future for Social Security as well as the ups and downs of the stock market. Maybe just the heating and air going out in hot Arkansas summer (a recent personal stress.) The cost of prescription drugs.
My boss often says that “stress is the way we know we’re still alive.” He’s right, you know. Because we all have it. The question becomes how we deal with it.
Instead of a “calming comfort blanket” I like to imagine God wrapping his heavenly, strong, comforting, peaceful arms around me. Remember Jesus’ words:
Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Matthew 11:28 NIV
Jesus didn’t promise an easy life, but he promised comfort, peace and joy even in our “brief and momentary” troubles if we rest in him.
And Peter wrote:
Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you. 1Peter 5:7 NIV
It’s one of my favorite verses. And what about the Psalmist’s words?
Be still, and know that I am God; Psalm 46:10a NIV
Isn’t that the hardest part? To be still. To trust. To yield control to a higher power, all-knowing, loving, gracious, merciful. The One who holds our lives in his hands and knows our beginning and promises eternity with him.
Finally, Paul wrote to the church at Thessalonica:
Be joyful always; pray continually; give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus. 1 Thessalonians 5: 16-18 NIV
Perhaps there are answers to today’s stress other than a comfort calming blanket. Go ahead, try one, if you think it will help. But there is a way of faith that costs nothing, except your heart and soul. Just sayin’…