And so the parent’s “job” of worry begins. I was thinking of all the opportunities our children give us to worry. I was thinking also of how our Father would have us release worry.
I am certainly not the one to address this, as my modus operandi is still to “worry first, pray second.” What an indictment to see that statement in print. This is not how I want to live. This is not how I want my children to live. And yet, there it is.
When I became a Christian in college, my testimony included my release from worry and a comment on how my husband had taught me that worry equals sin. Somewhere from there to here, I took back worry and I think it had a lot to do with having children.
You know, if I were honest, I’d have to admit that being anxious has not added a single hour to my span of life (Mttw 6:27) or to the lives of those for whom I’ve worried. On those rare occasions when I have intentionally calmed myself down and delivered my concerns on a platter to the One who actually affects outcomes, I have found him faithful to give me peace. Imagine that…just like He promises (Phil. 4:6-7).
Someone has pointed out that when we choose worry over prayer, when we behave as if it is by worry that things will work out, we rob God of the opportunity to receive his due glory when the crisis passes (as most do). If we continue to carry the burden ourselves it stands to reason that at least some of the glory in the end must surely be due us and our most excellent skill of worry. We take from God the glory we would ascribe him, because we never really recognized in the first place his full reign to act on our behalves.
I don’t know if this makes sense in print, but I am convicted all over again as I write it. In my heart I don’t want to rob God of his due glory. The few times I have remembered this in my circumstances, my burdens have been noticeably lighter. What then, oh man, that I should work against self interest in wresting the rod or the scepter from God’s hand!
As I write this, I am purposing to increasingly throw my burdens upon his yoke. This will be a task especially as our family increases (through marriage and grandchildren) and as my husband and I and our parents age. I ask the Holy Spirit to remind me in the moment and to break this long-standing habit of self-idolatry…for my good and his glory!
[P.S. By the way, A & A have returned home with the prescription to “keep an eye on it.” I don’t think worry would have changed that.]