Time to Worry Means Time to Pray

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holding mug of coffee on knee in living room.

I’m blessed with some amazing friends, both real and virtual. Some I’ve known forever; others I’ve never met outside of the computer keyboard. Either way, they are amazing people.

My cup of friendship is definitely on the full side.

I count you among them as well. Your responses to my struggles last week were so loving and gracious, especially considering that many of you are carrying much heavier burdens than I. I’ve been praying that you are feeling relief from some of those weights.

The last few weeks have been rough with family illnesses, theft, time management issues, doubts over my parenting, and a general feeling of the blahs. We won’t even get into the hormone/perimenopause discussion, but that is there, too. Add a national tragedy into the mix and the world can feel upside down.

However, I have a great group of friends, as I mentioned, who’ve rallied to my aid with calls, emails, and advice. My friend Sharon and I spent over 90 minutes chatting on the phone  the other day. We were canceling our kids’ playday since FishKids have cooties this week, and we didn’t want her kids to catch them. But that didn’t mean we couldn’t talk.

Sharon said something so simple and profound, I had to share it with you:

If you’ve got time to worry, you’ve got time to pray.

Amen and amen. Of course, I knew worry was useless. You know that whole rocking chair analogy and all. But, it’s much easier to say “Don’t worry,” than it is to stop worrying.

I know. I used to be the biggest worrywart ever born. I’m thankful that God has grown me in that area, but I still have my moments.

Sharon found me in one of those moments.

Her words spoke new life into my heart. Because, yes, that is the way to fight your worries.

It’s easier to stop an action if we have something positive to put into its place. Replace the bad habit with a good one.

So, this week when I’m tempted to worry, I’m going to try to pray instead because prayer does a number of things:

  • It confesses to God my dependence on Him.
  • It is an active demonstration of that dependence, a willful submission on my part.
  • It gets my heart more in line with where God wants it.
  • It is a battle against evil, whether in my thoughts or in the world.
  • It keeps me mindful of God’s ways and the role He wants me to play in this life.

It’s sometimes seems trite to say, “Well, just pray about it.” But, this was convicting to me. I have time to worry. That means I have time to pray.

Time to pray to The One who can do something about those things that I fret about.

Rejoice in the Lord always; again I will say, Rejoice. Let your reasonableness be known to everyone. The Lord is at hand; do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. —Philippians 4:4-7
  • Rejoice in who God is – Maker and Sustainer of all things.
  • Be reasonable – don’t go off on a wild goose chase in your mind about all the horrors that could happen in the situation at hand. You don’t know what will happen, so don’t borrow trouble.
  • Trust that God is there and that He is in control.
  • Don’t be anxious. Don’t fret. Don’t focus on the maybe’s.
  • Pray. Be thankful for the good that there is in the situation. Seek that good out. Ask for help if you can’t see it.
  • Rest in God’s goodness and peace.

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  1. Thanks for your lovely thoughts again this week! I really look forward to your Sunday posts! I will continue to keep you in my prayers as well…that God will lift you up and encourage you in the midst of your rough patch, so that you can continue to be a blessing to your family and an inspiration to so many of us.

  2. I just read your other post which I didn’t receive.My thoughts and prayers are with you and all the others who are having such a rough time this year.I myself suffer from SAD(seasonal affective disorder) as do my sister’s.It is directly tied to the lack of sunshine in the winter months.The doctor prescribed a lamp that mimic’s the suns rays.It does not tan me but gives me a daily dose of sunshine that has alleviated a lot of my sadness in the winter months.I have had to remove my son from public school because they were going to send him to a alternative school because of his meltdowns.He is high yield autistic with severe anxiety issues and stranger phobias.I truly have no idea where to start the homeschooling because when he was presented with workbooks,he had a massive meltdown and ended up in bed for hours.He is 7th grade but must have someone helping him at all times.Maybe you need to simply take a break from school for a couple of weeks and let the children help you with some of the things that you need to get done.My hubby say’s when God closes one door,he always opens another and I am holding to that idea with all my might.

    1. Thanks for your kind words. I remember having a rough go after the time change last year. It must be light and all that, too.

      Hang in there with your own challenges. Blessings to you!

  3. Jessica thank you for this post! You are right NOW is definitely the time to PRAY not worry! I “borrowed” the phrase “a time to worry means you have time to pray and used it in my FB status. I am praying for those angels who received their wimgs way too early this week! May God be able to orevent such a senseless tragedy from happening again and may He grant peace to the families and friends that were left without their precious loved one in the tumultuous aftermath of this catastrophe. Thank you for reminding me that if I have time to worry then I DO HAVE TIME TO PRAY!!!!!

  4. Thank you for this post. Like you, my last few weeks have been troublesome. A terminal diagnosis for my father, sick kids, sick me, financial worries, and, as you noted, a national tragedy that has rocked me to my core. On top of that, I am feeling sad that I am feeling so little joy this Christmas season, as Christmas is my favorite time of year.

    I am a worrier and often forget that the best place for me to go in times of worry is to the Lord. When I don’t know what to pray or how to pray, I just need to say “God, I’m lost, I need you. Help me.”

  5. There is certainly nothing wrong with setting aside a small amount of time to worry and go over things in your head and then releasing it. Prayer can be with you throughout your day. I think most people think of prayer as some long drawn out , formal process. It isn’t. It can be as simple as thanking God for your children and your other family and leaving the worries with him. I think we all get into the habit of awfulizing at times. It’s human nature. I sometimes have to remind myself that optimism is a habit. A good one. I am really sorry you are having a rough time right now. Surround yourself with upbeat people and things that make you feel good. Don’t beat yourself up because you are human. If you walk away from a conversation feeling badly, guilty, or feeling like you have been preached to, that’s not the person you need to be talking to. Look in that mirror every morning when you get up and tell yourself how much you love yourself. I have been following your blog for awhile now. I have to tell you, you are an amazing person. I rarely hear you say anything negative. You usually, always look on the bright side. There will be a rainbow for you very soon.

    1. Thanks for your encouraging words. I am feeling ready to fight. Gonna get my Pollyanna back on, if you will. I think that’s a good thing. 😉