Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Dump your worries and rocks

In chapter 3 we are talking about how worried we can get at times and how some of us carry around so much anxiety over everything. She has a shaded section in this chapter that is titled, “Ten signs of a big worrier.” I don’t struggle with this as much as others I know but I still can at times. I seem to be the one that counteracts their worry and tries to help them not be so worrisome but then you will find me worrying about little insignificant things every once in a while. I don’t think many can escape not worrying abut anything whatsoever. Bless you if you are! I am a firm believer in what Jesus said in Matthew 6:27 and try to remember it daily, “Who of you by worrying can add a single hour to his life?” And to take it further, your parents lives, your friends lives, or your children’s lives?? No one, none of us can add to anything by worrying. She gives us some pretty interesting statistics about what all we do worry about in which 70 % of them are things we can’t even do anything about. Wow that is a lot! We worry about way to much stuff which is completely out of our control. Are you one of those people that she talks about that worry so it won’t happen? I can see how that would be a good mind game to play but I think you would just set yourself up for disappointment because one day your worrying isn’t going to pay off and all the stress will be for naught.

We are also given a handy little chart that distinguishes the difference between actual worry and concern. She states, “Concern draws us to God. Worry pulls us from him.” I think that if you are one of those worrisome people where this is a problem area for you that you should use her chart about Worry vs. Concern and make a list. Write down all the things you find yourself worrying about and see which they fit under. I always think writing something down so you can visualize it helps put something in better perspective. Pray over this list and give it to God. See if you can take off some that are under the worry and genuinely give them to God as a concern and stop stressing yourself out. I think a big misconception among many is that when you become a Christian life gets easier. And she points this out, “Jesus warned us, “In this world you will have trouble” (John 16:33). Catch that! He said, “you will,” not “you might.”” Just because you are a Christian does not mean that everything will be fine, it means that you have a hope in a savior to help you get through those tough times. She also reminds us that Jesus also says, “Take Heart, I have overcome the world.” He has overcome the world. Remember the troubles of today will one day all fade away and we will be with our heavenly father. Don’t worry so much. Let some of it go. I love reading those bits of scripture over and over, they really help me let things go.

She gives good advice on how to stop mentally obsessing about issues and turn them into prayer. She gives us one last shaded area in this chapter titled, “Top ten ways to tame your worry habit.” I find these to be helpful with making the list and deciding if something is a worry or a concern and what to do with each item on that list. Please share with us other strategies you may have so that you don’t worry so much. I have seen where people will make their own bookmarks that have the scriptures that talk about not being worrisome so that they look at it constantly. Maybe you could do something similar so that you pray over this throughout the day.

In chapter 4 we come back to the overloaded wagon story. I think this is a very good mental illustration of what it’s like for us to overload our lives. She gives us some advice on how to dump some of our own, “rocks” in a couple of her shaded areas that offer practical advice. She reminds us that we can become overly busy with things that we think God would want us to do but really He may just be looking to spend time with us. As Jesus tells Martha that there is only one thing needed the author gives us an answer as this, “First, to know him and to put worship before work but also not to overdo even in our efforts on his behalf.” I feel like that is me many times over. I try to “do” too much when really I should let a lot of things go and take that time for Him and I. But I am still a steady work-in-progress. She reminds us to ask for wisdom from God before we start dumping our rocks. We need to be sure we are only carrying the load He wants us to have rather than the load we think He wants us to have. Let me know if you have any other tidbits of advice you can share with everyone that help you.

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