Worry - Why We Do It and How to Begin to Stop
It is late. You finally get the last child to bed. Well, he was put to bed over an hour ago, but this time, hopefully, it sticks. Throw that last load of laundry in the dryer, start the dishwasher so you’ll have clean bowls tomorrow morning, shower, brush teeth, phone on the charger…
…and finally… your head hits the pillow.
SLEEP. SLEEP. Go. To. Sleeeeeep. Do it. now.
Well, first, what am I going to do tomorrow with my son and his lack of desire to do school? I just don’t think I can deal with another fight.
And then there’s the little one who is almost three and not potty trained yet. I’ve been putting that off, but I know it is me and my lack of discipline, not him.
And I have to start dealing with the things going on in our support group. Should I send an email? Should I just be quiet?
And how are we going to deal with our budget this month? We need to have the car repaired, but we DO need to eat. Should I be looking for a home business or part time job? What if I wait too long and we get too far behind? Or should I just trust that things are going to be OK?
We all go through this. It is the one time in the day that everything around us has finally slowed down and our minds finally are free to think about other things besides wiping up spills and drilling spelling words. The thoughts start flowing in.
I don’t know about you all, but for me, that was when the bigger issues came into my mind. It wasn’t ever things like, “What kind of fruit should I serve with our waffles tomorrow morning?”
No. It was bigger things. Harder things. Things that I kept pushing to the back of my mind in the day so I wouldn’t have to deal with them.
But now they are back and I feel it coming. It is strong and pushes itself to the front of my mind. It is worry.
Do you ever worry, dear mommas? I know I do. I have to deal with it all the time. Why? We are instructed not to do it. Why is this such a hard thing? Why is this such a constant thing? Well, the end of verse 34 in Matthew gives us a clue: “Each day has enough trouble of its own.”
I have experienced those daily troubles. Have you? But the problem is that I hold on to them. I feel like I have to dwell on them. But that is the problem. You see, earlier in that chapter of Matthew, he tells us not to store up earthly treasures that do not last, because “Where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.”
And that’s the rub. You see, when I worry, I am dealing with fretting over earthbound treasures and issues and anxiety bound needs. These issues are all about me. That’s not why I am created to live. My dear Father in Heaven knows just what I need. He knows it before I do.
In the grand scheme of things, is it really a big deal that my child has not yet potty trained? Nowhere on a college application or job resume is a spot for “age potty trained.” He’ll get there.
What about the other son’s lack of enthusiasm about school? Will this always be a constant battle? Maybe, but isn’t that one of the reasons we are given our children? To train them up in the ways of the Lord and to come alongside them to help them to develop wisdom and character. Sometimes that involves lots of prayer and continual endurance. Oh, yeah. As we are training them, aren’t we becoming more refined in the fire as well?
How about the issues with my support group? Same thing. We are called to be a light to others, we are still growing ourselves and need to mature as we walk through the troubles of this world. There will always be conflict, but we can make that conflict become a way to bring God glory as we walk through the hard stuff that happens when people get together.
Money? Well, that might always be an issue. But the richness of the word in Matthew here helps us to see more about how our “earthbound treasure and anxiety bound needs” affect us.
Don’t we know that our Heavenly Father knows what we need? When we worry, we are really telling ourselves that we don’t believe that God is engaged with us. We don’t think that he is actively involved in our lives.
But, precious mommas, let me remind us all. Without God’s continual presence and love, our lives wouldn’t even be sustained. He is upholding us even now. He knit us together when he formed us, and he is holding our every molecule within our bodies together with his hand. Of course he is aware of our needs.
And this is the biggest rub.
“Who of you by worrying can add a single hour to his life?”
Let that sink in.
Are we accomplishing ANYTHING by worrying about it? No.
Let me propose something to you. I usually only post once a week due to my crazy travel and writing schedule, but I am going to come back tomorrow to post a follow-up on this. It is important.
Put a notepad and pen on your nightstand before you go to bed this evening. As you lie there tonight, if something worms its way into your head that causes you to begin to worry, lean over and jot it down. Then ASK GOD for his hand in whatever that worry is. He knows. He loves you. He’s got it.
Now go to sleep in the knowledge and peace that “not even Solomon in his splendor will be clothed like you.”
This short passage in Matthew concludes by saying that we should “seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well.” Not all our wants and anxiety bound needs. But what God knows we need.
He’s got this.
We need to trust Him.
If you struggle with worry, I challenge you to try this tonight. Give those worries to the One who is in control of the universe and of all eternity. Treasure HIM. And rest in that.
I’ll be praying for a good rest for you tonight!
Checking in tomorrow, Sherri