Conquering Worry

I have a freckle for every time that I worry about something.

For most people, their freckles are unearthed by the light of the summer sun, but for me, each one pops up after I’ve spent significant amounts of time and energy focusing on situations that I have absolutely zero control over.

Worrying is like a drug that I have become addicted to, but God ( a powerful, uplifting pair of words) is the methadone that will break my addiction.

As a second semester sophomore who has already found her calling, I desire to reach the mountain peak, even though I am supposed to focus on my time in the valley. I continually neglect to appreciate the importance of my life in the present. While I grapple with a desire to be somewhere else, I also worry about where I am going–an ironic combination.

It’s difficult for me to appreciate where I am when I know where I want to be, but I’ve been shown that I can’t get there until I complete the journey that I’m on now, and I certainly can’t get there without committing 100 percent of myself to God’s will for my life by conquering my innate disposition to worry, a feat only accomplished with His help.

When I was reading the year-long devotional Jesus Calling by Sarah Young today, I felt God speaking to me, not in a soft whisper but with a megaphone pressed against my ears. This is what my eyes needed to see and what my heart needed to receive.

January 19

I am leading you along the high road, but there are descents as well as ascents. In the distance, you see snow-covered peaks glistening in brilliant sunlight. Your longing to reach those peaks is good, but you must not take shortcuts. Your assignment is to follow me, allowing Me to direct your path. Let the heights beckon you onward, but stay close to me.

Learn to trust Me when things go “wrong.” Disruptions to your routine highlight your dependence on Me. Trusting acceptance of trials brings blessings that far outweigh them all. Walk hand in hand with Me through this day. I have lovingly planned every inch of the way. Trust does not falter when the path becomes rocky and steep. Breathe deep draughts of My Presence and hold tightly to My hand. Together we can make it! (Young 19)

John 21:19; 2 Corinthians 4:17; Habakkuk 3:19

Jesus Calling by Sarah Young

How’s that for a swift, spiritual kick to the face?

The discontentment that I feel combined with my incessant worrying both blind me from seeing daily blessings from God. All too often, I find myself neglecting to trust in Him; the Alpha and Omega; the very One who created me and knows me better than anyone.

So, why on Earth wouldn’t I always trust in God when He always guarantees a return on investment PLUS interest? (Because God always gives us more than what we give to him).

As fallible beings, we’re programmed to sin. It’s as plain and simple as that. There’s no way to avoid making mistakes, but if we surrender ourselves to God, He shows us how to spin those mistakes around into beneficial lessons; trials that test our spiritual mettle in order to make us stronger, and He does this time and again.

I feel like I am broken down each and every day, learning new lessons or relearning the ones that don’t exactly have a high rate of retention–my Achilles’ heel being my ability to worry about anything and everything.

God’s patience is absolutely mindboggling to me. It is infinite in its supply, even for repeat offenders such as myself. I worry about little things, like being able to complete the day’s work within a limited amount of time, and I worry about big things, like whether or not I’ll make it in the career that my heart yearns for.

But no matter how big or small the subjects of worry are, it is pointless to accrue anxiety over any of them. Why not put my faith in the Lord who created me and the entire world, who knows exactly what I’ll be doing 10 years, 20 years, and even 50 years from now?  This entire ordeal is yet another reminder that I must go to God about every single aspect of my life.

No one on this Earth can give me the peace and comfort that He gives me when I surrender myself to Him and His will. His plans are far greater than any I could ever fathom, let alone orchestrate, for myself.

So whether I am working as a journalist for Road & Track, a host on The Grand Tour, a professional bull rider, or  I become proficient in underwater basketweaving, I will always find peace if I continuously surrender myself to Him. I have never been satisfied from chasing after my own aspirations without consulting Him as my guide; there is only ever emptiness and unfulfillment.

It’s been ages since I’ve shared my heart like this, but I felt convicted to open up about this trial I have been going through because I know that life can be hard, especially when we can see the mountain peak from our position in the valley. But I’ve learned that I have to appreciate these days that are fraught with frustrations and tedious assignments because every aspect of life is intentional, and each and every trial, blessing, ascension, and descension is meant to shape us in some kind of way.

Maintaining faith in God takes discipline and daily submission. We must prepare our hearts and minds for those reminders of His love for us and the greater purpose He has for our lives, wearing spiritual blinders to keep us from wandering off course.

But for the times when we do wander–because we all will–like any good shepherd, God always helps us find our way again.

In case you were wondering, here’s what the Lord said to me this evening:

Following the path led by man only reaches a destination of fleeting happiness, but pursuing the path navigated by God leads to everlasting joy.  

 

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