I have been doing some research for a speaking event coming up soon and I came across one writer’s rules for being a worrier. I have slightly adapted Robert L. Leahy thoughts:
- If something bad can happen, then it is your responsibility to worry about it.
- Do not accept any uncertainly—you need to know for sure, so worry.
- Treat all of your negative thoughts as if they are all true.
- Anything that could happen is a reflection of who you are as a person.
- Failure is unacceptable, so worry about everything.
- Get rid of any negative feelings immediately-express them far and wide.
- Treat everything like an emergency.
Another author has suggested that the things we worry about breakdown like this:
30% are things in the past, 12% are things that are none of our business, 10% involve sicknesses (mostly imagined), and 40% will never happen. That only leaves us 8% of things that are even worth worrying about!
So why are we world-class worriers?
- Many of us think in extremes. We imagine the worst possible outcome and focus on that.
- Many of us have deep-seated “ruts” in our lives and negative thinking is just the default pattern for our brains.
- We mistakenly think that we are in charge of our lives. We don’t have a lot of confidence in our selves, and thus the worry.
- And some of us are just great avoiders. Worry is a kind of emotional avoidance. We worry so we don’t have to actually do something about the situation.
Jesus knew that many of His followers would be great “fussers” so He took great pains to address it in His famous Sermon on the Mount. Look at the end of Matthew chapter six.
“Do not worry, saying ‘What shall we eat’ or ‘What shall we drink’ or ‘What shall we wear’? For the pagans run after all these things and your heavenly Father knows that you need them. 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.”
Worrying make us cross bridges long before we come to them and it robs us of our DAILY joy that the Lord has promised. The proverbial “Royal Road to Misery” is lined with those of us who ignore His promises, focus on the wrong stuff and refuse to appropriate His mercies for that particular day.
This week would be a wonderful time to climb out of this rut and clamber into the arms of our patient Savor. Our minds, emotions, thoughts and feelings can be turned towards Him and His purposes. We just have to turn them. “Seek Him First”-TODAY.