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Worry

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Worry

Is there a magic cutoff period when

offspring become accountable for their own

actions? Is there a wonderful moment when

parents can become detached spectators in

the lives of their children and shrug, 'It's

their life,' and feel nothing?

 

When I was in my twenties, I stood in a
hospital corridor waiting for doctors to put a few stitches in my daughter's head. I asked,

'When do You stop worrying?' The nurse said,

'When they get out of the accident stage.'

My Dad just smiled faintly and said nothing.

 

When I was in my thirties, I sat on a little

chair in a classroom and heard how one of my

children talked incessantly, disrupted the class,

and was headed for a career making

license plates. As if to read my mind, a teacher said, 'Don't worry, they all go through

this stage and then you can sit back, relax and enjoy them.' My dad just smiled

faintly and said nothing.

 

When I was in my forties, I spent a lifetime

waiting for the phone to ring, the cars to come

home, the front door to open. A friend said,

they're trying to find themselves. Don't worry,

in a few years, you can stop worrying.

They'll be Adults.' My dad just smiled faintly

and said nothing.

 

By the time I was 50, I was sick & tired of
being Vulnerable. I was still worrying over my

children, but there was a new wrinkle. There

was nothing I could do about it. My dad just smiled faintly and said nothing. I Continued to anguish over their failures, be Tormented by their frustrations and absorbed in their disappointments.

 

My friends said that when my kids got married
I could stop worrying and lead my own

life. I wanted to believe that, but I was

haunted by my dad's warm smile and his

occasional, 'You look pale. Are you all right?

Call me the minute you get home. Are

you depressed about something?'

 

Can it be that parents are sentenced to a

lifetime of worry? Is concern for one another

handed down like a torch to blaze the trail of

human frailties and the fears of the

unknown? Is concern a curse or is it a virtue

that elevates us to the highest form of life?

 

One of my children became quite irritable

recently, saying to me, 'Where were you?

I've been Calling for 3 days, and no one answered. I was worried.'

I smiled a warm smile.

The torch has been passed.

Do You Know What Family Means?

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Luke 24:38
And he said unto them, Why are ye troubled? and why do thoughts arise in your hearts?

Worry Is Wearisome

An anxious heart weighs a man down, but a kind word cheers him up. Proverbs 12:25

Worry is wearisome. It is fatigue to our emotions like physical pain is to our bodies. Worry can trigger stomachaches, high blood pressure, headaches, anxiety disorders and depression. It is an enemy to executing a joy filled and productive life. Worry can so weigh you down that you are immobilized for lack of energy and because of fear.

Your family tree may have borne the fruit of worry over generations, but you can purge out obsession with negative thinking through trust in the Lord. Jesus’ teaching is very clear:

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 6:33-34).

Exercised trust energizes the weary. Your personality may lend itself to worry. You can see it in your furrowed brow, or in your brooding countenance. You worry about the economy and its effect on your retirement. You wring your hands over the war and wonder when it will ever end. You are stressed out over work, because of situations and people you are unable to change. Anxiety may have paralyzed you as a parent, because you don’t feel qualified to carry out your responsibilities.

Alcohol has become your outlet for those things that you cannot control, but the gnawing fear is still there the next day. One simple solution is to make a two-column prayer list with the headings ‘Things I can’t change’ and ‘Things I can change’. Ask God for faith and patience with the former and wisdom and courage to act on the later. Prayer is your time-tested prescription for worry:

Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God” (Philippians 4:6).”

Furthermore, look for those who long to be encouraged, who feel trapped by the anxieties of life (Luke 21:34). They need the truth of God’s word, because the cares of this world try to marginalize the truth. Truth can be forgotten in the fearful suffering of severe trials. Your kind words remind them of Christ’s care and concern for their health, their family and their faith.

Lift yourself and others out of the downward spiral of depression by cheering them up with truth. Read the Bible out loud with a friend and meditate on its promises that are filled with hope and encouragement. Use uncertainty as a reason not to worry, but rest in the Lord. You are freed up when you don’t fret, but apply faith instead. Above all else, His word wins over worry and gives strength for your faith journey!

Jesus answered:

“It is written: ‘Man shall not live on bread alone, but on every word that comes from the mouth of God” (Matthew 4:4).

What promise from the Lord can I rest in and trust to overcome my chronic worry?

 

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