If there is anything I do well in life, it’s worry. As early as I can remember, I was a worrier. I worried about everything – my parents dying or getting divorced, my siblings doing drugs, my pets dying, my pants coming undone in public, getting arrested (I’ve never done anything to merit an arrest but still…) – you name it, I worried about it!
I can laugh about it now, but unfortunately, this pattern of worry continued through my adolescence and into adulthood. It wasn’t until my mid-twenties that I realized how worry had paralyzed my life in many ways.
It weighed me down.
I was always afraid that, though things might look good for a moment, just around the corner doom was waiting for me.
Although, I put a lot of work (and prayer) into conquering worry and anxiety, motherhood has already brought me back to this battle. As a mom, I want to protect my son from anything bad happening to him.
Matthew 6:27 says, “Can all your worries add a single moment to your life?”. The answer, of course, is no! In fact, what I have learned firsthand is that worry will take not just a single moment but years from your life.
In the past, worrying about the unknown kept me from pursuing meaningful relationships, trying new things and enjoying the “little things” in life. Worry prevented me from pursuing dreams and fully living out my God-given purpose. It even caused some health problems in my life, when I was in my twenties.
My worry had robbed me of peace, joy and overall quality of life.
Overcoming worry and anxiety has not been easy. It is something I’ve had to consciously work on. Some days are more difficult than others. I have definitely come a long way, though.
One of the most helpful coping mechanisms for me has been playing out the worst case scenario. If I’m worried about something I ask myself, “ok, if that happens then what?” “and “then what” and so on.
Eventually, I get to a place where I realize everything will be fine because God will always take care of me.
Often times worry boils down to two things: control and trust.
I worry about things I cannot control. Which, ultimately, means I lack trust in God – belief that He has things under control – that He will take care of me.
As this passage of scripture so beautifully explains, this is an unrealistic fear. “And if God cares so wonderfully for wildflowers that are here today and thrown into the fire tomorrow; he will certainly care for you…” (verse 30).
God will take care me.
I may not be in control of all things (or anything, really), but the One who is cares more about me than I can even comprehend. He will take care of me no matter what.
In order to conquer worry you have to be willing to relinquish control and trust that God is looking out for your best interest.