Worries. We all have them. If we are willing to truly get honest with each other, I am sure that we have all worried about big and small things often throughout our lives. Oh yes, there are the big things like family issues, employment and finances and then there are the little things like being more organised, drinking more water, and finally having the neighbours over for coffee. Truth be told, at times I have worried about worrying too much about issues and other times I've worried about worrying too little about issues in many areas of my life. Yikes! Although having a healthy concern about key aspects of our lives is important, excessively worrying about them does very little if anything to help our stressful situations. A prime example for me is I have been worried about the fact that I have not blogged lately. I pride myself with blogging on a regular basis as I truly enjoy it and I like to encourage my readers in any way I can. Report card writing and assisting my daughter with her final assignments and studying for exams has taken a lot of my time lately. Rather than worrying though, I am now taking action. So here I am in front of my computer sharing my heart and I must admit it is really making me feel much, much better!
The children’s author Kevin Henkes wrote a great book called Wemberly Worried. It is the story of a little mouse who worries about everything from what she eats, strange noises in her home, losing her toys and worst of all: going to school for the first time. It is a great book to read for the first day of school as the students can really connect to it. The beauty of the book is that when she goes to school she realizes that she is not alone in her “worrisome world.” By meeting a great friend who shares her heart and concerns, together they forge a wonderful and meaningful friendship.
There is such power in being real with each other isn’t there? When I feel most overwhelmed like little Wemberly, it is so helpful to have someone I respect and admire share that he or she feels the same and is right there with me in the struggle. Being transparent with each other is helpful as it serves to lessen our worries when we realize that others too have similar struggles and are still somehow pressing on. Finding a true empathetic person is such a gift and great strategy when feeling overwhelmed with worry. Talking about our concerns really helps as keeping them bottled up inside can be so unhealthy. Often what we worry about in reality may not be as serious as we may imagine. When I did counseling as a social worker, I recall one client so obviously distraught for her first session, it was very heartbreaking. She shared that is would be very hard to share her story, but she would “try.” She went on to say that this would probably be her first and last session as when she shared the “horrible” details of her life story in her worried mind I would ask her to leave and say “there’s the door.” She truly believed that if she let her true self and story be known that her vulnerability would result in total rejection. Imagine her surprise when the “there’s the door,” comment was never spoken! Instead a wonderful relationship was started where she felt comfortable on a weekly basis to share her worries and true self without the fear of judgement and rejection. It is a powerful thing to offer people our acceptance of them flaws and all. It is also something that some people sadly have not experienced often enough in their lives.
There is a very cute viral video out right now that I have viewed multiple times. I have included it at the end of this blog. It is of a toddler who is trying to do her own seatbelt up without success yet is repeatedly refusing help. Every time her father offers assistance, she flat out refuses saying “You worry about yourself!” It is so adorable and humorous, yet strikes a chord. It is not her father who has the issue but her. Out of sincere concern he wants to help but by her refusing his help although comical to watch, she still remains frustrated. Reaching out for help is a sign of strength not weakness. It shows that we know ourselves well enough to realize that some situations are just too hard to handle alone.
Talking to others we trust is so helpful and so is taking our worries to God in prayer. I am a singer. I love to sing many different songs including some really old hymns of the church. Although these hymns were written so long ago, the truth of the lyrics still hold true today. One such hymn that I love to sing is “What a Friend We Have in Jesus.” The words have great, yet simple advice for dealing with worry. They simply state:
What a friend we have in Jesus, all our sins and griefs to bear
What a privilege to carry everything to God in prayer,
Oh what peace we often forfeit, oh what needless pain we bear,
All because we do not carry, everything to God in prayer.
Prayer is a powerful tool when dealing with worry. When we pray we give our worries to God and ask Him to partner with us and help us problem solve effectively. I remember when Shannon was very little I asked her to pray with me about a big concern. We prayed together and when we said “amen,” I started rambling on about how worried I was AGAIN! Shannon said something I will never forget. In her childlike, yet profound wisdom she stated “Mom, we just prayed about that, now stop worrying!” Out of the mouths of babes as they say!
If you are feeling worried, know that you are not alone. Know that also you were not meant to handle your burdens on your own either. We need each other and we are on the same team. The letters in team stand for “together everyone accomplishes more.” This is true, so let’s share our hearts with others and God to make positive steps to leave worries behind us, as we look ahead to a brighter future!
Until next time ~
1 Peter 5:7: Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you.
Little Lesson Learned: Time spent in worry is time poorly spent. Reaching out for help to problem solve is a much more effective use of your time.
Copyright: littlelessonslearnedbydana, 2015
“Though no one can go back and make a brand new start, anyone can start now and make a brand new ending.” Carl Bard Happy New Year everyone! I have been thoroughly enjoying my time off and am very excited about what 2015 has in store. The gift of a new year has arrived. The concept of a brand new year on the horizon and the “clean slate” feeling of a fresh start has always been something I find very refreshing. As the old year has passed and 2015 is already in full swing, it becomes a time of focused reflection on the highs and lows of the past 365 days. This year I have definitely had more highs than lows and for that I am truly grateful. Many I know do not have the same experience with 2014 and I am sensitive to that fact. As I review the past year in my own mind, I am very thankful for the accomplishments that I have made, and the people and opportunities God has brought into my life. Among my reflections is the publishing of my first book, Magic Kisses which is by God’s grace blessing others. Through the book sales we were able to purchase seven bed kits for impoverished children via the organization Sleeping Children around the World which means that seven children have a chance to sleep in comfort like they never did before. I also have been working on health and fitness goals like regular exercising and heathier eating which I have implemented. As a result I am feeling healthier and have had a pleasant bonus of some needed weight loss. Also I have really enjoyed writing this blog and am very excited about the direction it is headed, which I will share in greater detail at a later date. My family has experienced God’s blessing and favour this year that is certain and I am very humbled and grateful.
It is true I have been fortunate to have had a very exciting and blessed year that I can look back on with fond memories. Some years in the past have been much more difficult for me and my family. As mentioned many of my friends have had a very challenging, and sad year in 2014. Some have battled serious illnesses, or have lost loved ones. Some have experienced great financial struggles, encountered difficult family issues, experienced unemployment, or just felt that life has been one heartache after another. Understandably so these people are very grateful to kiss 2014 goodbye, saying “good riddance” in hopes of a better year and overall life in general.
Whatever type of year you have had I want you to know that it is never too late for a fresh start or new perspective on life. People change their lives every day, and what a great time to start at the beginning of a brand new year. Change begins one step at a time, but even little changes can have very positive results over time.
I remember as a child we were allowed to sing hymns at school. One of my favourites was a song entitled “My God and I.” Like yesterday I can still hear my sweet teacher singing the alto in my ear helping me get the harmony part. It is a golden oldie, but the words spoke to me even as a child that as long as God was by my side, I would be alright. A line that especially spoke to me was the line that stated “My God and I will go for aye together. We’ll walk and talk as good friends should and do. This earth will pass, and with it common trifles, but God and I will go unendingly.” When we think of the year 2015 ahead, none of us honestly know what we will encounter. We may reflect back in twelve months that it was amazing or amazingly heartbreaking. Nothing is certain, except that if we have God travelling with us on this 365 day journey, we are never alone and He will provide us with the strength to face whatever comes our way. Today in church we sang the old hymn Blessed Assurance. The lyrics say “This is my story. This is my song, praising my Saviour all the day long.” We are to praise and honour God through the good and bad times. When I reflect on “my story,” year after year I know that God has been by my side through it all ordering my steps and providing me with grace to make it through the most difficult and wonderful moments of my life.
People carry a lot of regrets, burdens, issues and deep hurts with them from year to year. These heavy problems do not magically disappear as the calendar turns to a new year, yet with a decision to include God on our journey we will truly notice a difference in our lives. One of my new year’s resolutions is to start a daily journal which includes favourite Bible verses and things that I am thankful for. I feel it is important to always be mindful of all that we have and feel this is a great way to start.
So my friend, what is your “2014 story?” I would love to hear about it a email@example.com, and pray with you that 2015 will be a great and better year for you. Know that you are a wonderful, capable, and precious human being who deserves a life full of purpose and joy. That is what I truly wish for you! Remember that on a car the rear view mirror is small but the windshield is large. There is a reason for that as we need to stop looking behind us but press on forward to better, more promising days ahead! Remember that.
Happy New Year!
Until next time ~
2 Corinthians 5:17: Therefore if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away, behold the new has come.
Little Lesson Learned: Your 2015 story is waiting to be written. It is exciting to think what is coming your way.
Copyright: littlelessonslearnedbydana, 2015