"Jesus loves your child more than you, he was Jesus' child before yours," said the sweet older church lady to me. At the time, we were living in Arizona and I was starting to feel the pain and worry that comes with raising a teenager. I smiled and walked away (ok ran) and thought to myself - what does she know?! No one could love my child more than me!! Stupid church lady!
The definition of worry is to disturb or interfere with someone's peace of mind. Well that also could be the definition of teenager! Worry is such an awful, time consuming emotion. It keeps us up at night, causes us to isolate and even judge the church lady!
A few Sundays ago, at church I was talking with two sweet, young mamas and our topic was worry. One mother had tears in her eyes the entire conversation, her 3 yr old is having heath issues. She shared that it frightened her not having any control. She cannot control or fix this. My heart hurt for her and her little one, but also for the fear and worry in her heart. I assured her I understood. I spent many sleepless nights walking the floor with my Bible and praying (ok begging) for protection, I also shared how I was the queen of worry.
In Matthew 11:28 it says "Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened I will give you rest." I would visualize taking my burden before the Lord and laying it at his feet only to take a few steps and turn around, pick it, and run away. I was on the bullet train of worry all the way to the last stop of high anxiety!! My mind would wander to terrible places. I was in constant prayer, I never knew what it meant by"pray without ceasing." 1 Thessalonians 5:17.
Are you kidding? I cannot cease, I am consumed with worry!!
One sleepless night I sat straight up in bed, woke my husband and said I have been praying for the wrong thing!! I have been asking God for protection, I need to pray I can handle what ever His will is for this situation. My poor husband rolled over and said "I love you, but can you save these conversations for the morning?"
Did my burden end the next morning? No, but my prayer strategy changed and also my thoughts changed. I felt I had taken action and started to replace lies with the truth. Paul said in Philippians 4:7 "The peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your heart and protect your minds in Christ Jesus."
Even though I was pacing the floor, Bible in hand, my mind was wandering, I needed to be going back to the truth and not the "WHAT IF'S". When you think God thoughts, he will guard your mind with peace. I had to stop the poison, with the truth. I did not see an overnight change (and yes I still worry) but I am not consumed by it.
This experience showed me I had a choice to confront my thoughts. I was not going to be a victim of my thoughts and I knew I had the power through Jesus to take them captive. I needed to find the reasons to have faith and not to worry. I wanted life changing faith and this was it, and boy did it ever change my faith!! The world is filled more than ever with spiritual toxins, but your mind can overcome them. Paul said (he is my fav) "Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind." Romans 12:2
Everyday I have to take my thoughts captive and ask God to direct my thoughts to what is true.
So back to my sweet teary eyed mama, I hugged her and yep, I told her Jesus loves your child more than you. Stupid church lady!!