Replace Worry With Worship

I lost a cousin this week unexpectedly. He was only 7 years old. In addition to that, these last few months we've been dealing with Asher's health issues, as well as some health issues that Matt is having due to his radiation treatments years ago. It's been a little rough the past couple of months, and it just seems to be one thing after another. I've been more anxious and stressed than usual and even a little discouraged this last month or so.

But despite my feelings that are ever changing and untrustworthy, I keep my mind and my eyes on what I know IS true-that I serve an amazing, faithful, loving, trustworthy, GOOD God.

So many people these days are completely consumed by worry and anxiety and fear.

We all have times in our lives when our stress and anxiety levels will be high. Maybe it's a current situation that is happening in your life that you have no control over. Maybe it's starting a new job, or someone in your family facing an illness. It's a normal reaction to worry and have some anxiety in those situations. But there are even some people who worry about things that haven't happened yet...they stress about the unknown and worry constantly about bad things that could happen to them or their family in the future.

Either way, worrying does us NO good. None whatsoever. It won't change anything, it won't stop what you fear from happening, and it only causes MORE stress. But sometimes, it's like we just can't help it. Our mind naturally goes there.

While anxiety can often be a medical condition due to a chemical imbalance, other times it is just a mindset issue.  It's what we allow ourselves to focus on. We have the power to change what we think about and not let worry take control of our lives.

The way to stop worry from consuming your life is to change what you think about, to re-focus your thoughts. Instead of focusing on your fears or on the problem or situation you're facing, which will only make it grow bigger in your mind, you have to make a conscious effort to focus on God.

When it comes down to it, what worry really is is a lack of trust in God. You don't trust His plan. You don't trust that He can work anything in your life for your good and His glory. You don't trust that he will be with you and give you the strength you need to get through whatever it is you are facing. You don't trust that He knows what He's doing. Without that trust, you will never have peace.

So when you find yourself stressed, or you're anxious, or worried, or afraid, or just completely overwhelmed...focus your mind on God.

Focus on His love, His goodness, His faithfulness, His grace.

Focus on the promises of His word.

Focus on the things you have seen Him do in your life and other's lives in the past.

Focus on His presence and the strength that He gives.

Focus on how you can learn and grow through your current situation.

Focus on JESUS and what He did for you on the cross.

Focus on all the good things in your life that you have to be thankful for.

When you think about these things, praise Him. Thank Him for who He is and all He's done. Read encouraging scriptures to yourself.

I have had to do this myself this week more this week than ever. Whenever I find myself getting discouraged, or start to have negative thoughts take over my mind, I start naming things in my head that I'm thankful for. I start praising God and thinking about His love and His goodness, even when it's the last thing I feel like doing. And I can tell you, something changes when you do that. 


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