“Worrying is carrying tomorrow's load with today's strength—carrying two days at once. It is moving into tomorrow ahead of time. Worrying doesn't empty tomorrow of its sorrow, it empties today of its strength.”―Corrie Ten Boom
Corrie was a wise woman. She pegged worry for what it is—a robber. Unfortunately, most of us open the doors of our minds and hearts to it anyway, and let it carry off our most valuable possession—time.
As a mother, I’m most guilty of worrying about my children. I consider every angle of how to solve a situation, when I should turn the problem over to God. I’m not absolving myself of responsibly to do the best I can within my circumstances. But often I worry about things beyond my human capabilities to fix in the timeframe I want the problem solved.
In doing so, I give myself way more credit than I deserve for control over my life or those I’m worrying about.
God has challenged me on this recently. I must say, I usually fail the test before I dust myself off and request a retake. That’s when He starts dealing with my heart.
Are you a worrier?
This is what Christ had to say about worry.
“Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothes? Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they? Can any one of you by worrying add a single hour to your life?...But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well. Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.” Matthew 6:25-27, 33-34
The Bible says Jesus was tempted in all ways. Surely, worry tried to bring him down during his life. His reassuring words show that it mattered greatly to him that we not waste our time in such misery.
So what are some practical solutions to break the worry cycle?
· Consciously replace the worry thought with a positive one. This is easier said than done. I know. But when I force my mind to think about what is working right in that moment, it lifts the burden of worry.
· The most obvious solution is prayer. Our Father knows the worries before we give words to them. He wants us to leave our burden with Him and trust Him to carry it. Don’t return to pick it up after you’ve left it at the altar.
· Call (or e-mail) a friend and share your concerns. Carrying a burden alone often magnifies it. Perhaps vocalizing the worry will diminish its significance in your mind or help you clarify how to solve all or part of the problem. If not, you have a friend praying with you for a solution and offering support.
· Memorize Scripture. From my own experience, being able to recount even part of a verse helps instill peace into my troubled thoughts. Psalm 119:11-16 is a good example of how God’s Word instructs us in this process.
I have hidden your word in my heart
that I might not sin against you.
Praise be to you, Lord;
teach me your decrees.
With my lips I recount
all the laws that come from your mouth.
I rejoice in following your statutes
as one rejoices in great riches.
I meditate on your precepts
and consider your ways.
I delight in your decrees;
I will not neglect your word.
If you have a prayer need you’d like to share here, please leave it in the comment section or email me confidential requests. I’d love to hear from you.
Take a moment to lift up those on the prayer list above, as well as Sgt. Jesse McCart, an American soldier wounded in Afghanistan and now in rehab. Two people from our prayer list have passed away recently. Please remember their families in your prayers. Praise reports are also listed. Enjoy the video below of "Word of God Speak" by Mercy Me.
“I am an old man and have known a great many troubles, but most of them have never happened.”― Mark Twain
© Laura Hodges Poole