A year ago my older daughter, Rose, was racked with all the worries that could plague a seven year old. She was worried about ebola, nuclear deals, her Daddy dying, a tornado hitting our house, and so many other things that were out of her control. It drove her crazy that life was out of her control, and I’d find that she would often cry and worry over things I would find silly. She would be so stressed out that she would sometimes even vomit in her worries when a particular worry struck her.
We tried different coping strategies with her, and we trying praying and memorizing verses, but nothing made her feel better. I found that sometimes her worries were infesting me and I was looking at everything through a worry-colored glass. I found myself sometimes consumed with worry.
I didn’t even really notice it, but I found that sometime over the Spring I wasn’t talking to Rose as much about her worries. I found that she wasn’t freaking out nearly so often. She didn’t come up to me every time I was on the computer to see whether or not I was reading some dread news report.
I didn’t really notice how much happier Rose was our how much less I was thinking that my own beautiful daughter was crazy until last week. One morning, Rose and I were sitting working out of a devotional called More for Girls Only! Devotions, and the devotional that morning dealt with worry. Part of the devotional activities had her making a list of all her worries. Mentally, I was prepared to sit there for an hour as she wrote everything down. She only came up with three worries. They were all still things out of her control: tornadoes, house fires and kidnapping.
However, as she wrote, she was able to reason how God still loved her even if something like that happened to her. She was able to talk about how sad she’d be if our house burned down and how much she’d miss our house, but that she knew that God would still provide somewhere for us to live, and she could still trust God.
I was impressed. I commented to her, “Wow! You definitely are spending a lot less time worrying than you used to.”
She told me that between learning to pray to God when she got worried, and a technique she learned through one of her church classes where they wrote down their worries and then crumpled up the paper and threw it away that she was feeling a lot better and less worried these days. She told me what a relief it was to finally be able to get rid of the worry.
I was relieved to see her so strong and happy. I knew that God had answered my fervent prayers for her to worry less and be happier.
I know now that worry is a choice, and that Jesus tells us in verses like John 14:1 and Matthew 6:25-34 not to worry. I realize that when I choose to turn to God and away from my worries that is the only way that my worries can be relieved.
There’s no easy fix for worry. That’s the one thing I’ve learned from dealing with Rose. However, I know that God is faithful to help us overcome our worries if we’ll just trust in him. That’s why I’m choosing not to worry.