Junk into Joy

I’ve been going through a lot of junk the past few months.  In fact, I’m carrying a low level of anxiety around all the time.

It’s been a struggle for me.  I’ve been dealing with a broken relationship or two. I’ve had the regular pressures of parenting.  Money worries have plagued me.  Worries about our air conditioning, our ripped up towels, old worn-out skillets, and our messy house bother me. I’ve been feeling stressed in many other areas too that I don’t even want to talk about. I’ve been feeling out of whack.  I’ve been worried about my health. Part of my health worries are because I’m suddenly struggling with panic attacks.  I could keep going, but I’m not really wanting to drag anyone down. However, I might have sat in my doctor’s office crying about some of these things for a while earlier this week. 🙂

This week I remembered prayer.  I also remembered Jesus.  I also remembered God is in control of everything in my life and every aspect of it.

In the midst of that, I got my new Illustrated Faith kit.  I haven’t ordered one in a few months, and I ordered this one on a whim, only to find that the monthly theme is perseverance.  It was obviously a God-send.

The first week’s key verse was Matthew 11:28, which says,

Come to me, all of you who are weary and carry heavy burdens, and I will give you rest.

I am weary of my heavy burdens.  I am weary of the anxiety. I am weary of the fear.  I need to lean into him and let him give me peace.

Junk

I remembered that when I give Jesus my burdens and worries, he takes them and turns them into joy.  I can’t control the things that happen in my life.  I can’t control the things that are causing me stress.

However, I can choose not to be stressed out.  I can’t choose it of the my own ability.  I can choose to lean into Jesus and find rest with him.  I can pray when I stressed.  When I show the physical manifestations of stress, I can choose to slow down, to breathe carefully and to pray.

I can see the beautiful and focus on the things that I am thankful for. The last time that I was under intense stress was to focus on thankfulness and my gifts that God has given me. With that, I was able to find myself feeling less stress and panic in a time that was not good to me. Now, I’m sternly reminding myself to do the same in this time of stress and anxiety.

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