Week 5 | JOY in Comfort

How often do we catch ourselves worrying for no reason? I know I am guilty of this frequently, and in the midst of all our worry, we forget who is always there and tells us not to worry. Do we actually, fully, truly with all our hearts trust God's promise that he'll take care of us and comfort us? Worry can distract us and pull us away from God, so we must remember to turn to Him, remember to fight those anxious thoughts and run to our father who will comfort us in his arms. When we cast all our worries on God, we begin to feel joy, we can begin to feel lighthearted. This week I am so happy to say that Jesse is writing the blog and talking about turning to God during times of worry and seeking comfort in Him. (She's also pretty funny, so get ready to laugh a little!)

Hi, I'm Jesse, and I am a worrier. I always seem to worry about everything all the time. I mean I seriously worry about everything. I worry about my running, my future, my class work, my family, my friends, that roach I saw in my room 3 weeks ago (that I never killed) ((I know it's still here)). I worry about this blog post, and I worry about any other unnecessary thing there is to worry about. 

I honestly can't think of a time when I wasn't like this. When I was younger, I would hold my hands out signaling cars to stop while crossing the parking lot into Walmart because I was worried that a) the people driving didn't already see us and b) once they saw us, they wouldn't know to stop. I looked ridiculous. It's actually pretty embarrassing to think about. Now I'm worried whoever is reading this thinks I'm weird. 

When it comes to running, I go to every cross country or track meet worried that I'm going to have a bad race, or that I'm going to fall, or that my coach is going to ask me to run the 4x400. And those chest pains after a really fast interval in the middle of January? Coach, stop the workout because I'm obviously having a heart attack. It's the only rational answer. But I mean, I'm pretty good at covering up the fact that I worry about races months in advance. Like when my mom asks me if I'm ready to run and I respond with, "Oh yeah, I feel great; I'm so ready; I'm not even really worried," I am pretty much telling the biggest lie ever. (sorry mommy) 

Worrying about my future and class work is kind of combined in one. By future, I mean that paper I have due in like April or something, and of course, where in the world am I going to go to college? But when I say class work, I mean that homework I'm avoiding right now to write this blog post before I forget everything I have planned to write. Even when I finish all of my homework and take all of my tests, I'm still worried I have some kind of homework I just don't know about (like that quest assignment I just remembered I have due in 3 hours, yay!). 

I think everyone worries about their family and friends. It's probably the most rationalized worrying that I do. I'm always worried about my friends' and family's safety. Always. My dad is always going back and forth between Mobile and home for work and my mom gets the joy of driving through Atlanta rush hour every so often, so that gives me more things to worry about. But in all of this worrying that I do, I forget that God gives me so many reminders that he is there to comfort me and everything is in his hands. (So when I'm worrying about everything, there isn't even a need to be...)

I think God gave me a physical reminder of his comfort through my mom. There is no one on this earth that I feel safer with. She's the most comforting friend I have and I'm not ashamed to say that I'm 17 and attached at her hip with Gorilla Glue. My mom is the one who encourages me to trust God and reminds me that there is no reason to worry when I have God watching over me. But God also gives me so many written reminders of his comfort. 

Joshua 1:9 says "Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go." Like, how comforting is that? No matter where I am, God is always with me. Even if I think I'm alone, I'm not. It's like during a thunderstorm as a kid when my mom would tell me there was nothing to be afraid of or worry about, but now 1) it's God telling me this and 2) it applies to life all day, everyday. 

One of my other favorite verses is 1 Peter 5:7 "Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you." In fact I love it so much I painted it on a canvas and hung it next to my bed because was worried I would forget. But wow, God is basically telling me "hey, let me do all the worrying for you like I've got this under control you just sit back in relax. Oh, and it's all because I care for you more than you'll ever know."

God is pretty cool that way. He doesn't beat around the bush on whether or not he has really got you covered. The Bible straight up says "cast all your anxiety on him." Okay God, I hope you know what you are getting yourself into...did you not just read about all my worries? But seriously, though, God's got it. Literally nothing is too big for him. It doesn't mean that there won't be stressful times. What it does mean is that whenever we start to get anxious, we turn to God. When we start to get scared, we turn to God.

Turning to God won't always make the stressful situation disappear (sometimes it may disappear if it pointless worrying). But turning to God in our anxious state to trust and seek comfort in him will make the situation be seen in a new light, and we will remember that we aren't facing it alone; God's got our back.