Wednesday, February 22, 2012

The Mindless Wanderings of a Worrier...

Wes getting shots for the Haiti trip...
Our two kind, sweet, adventurous boys are headed to Haiti in a few weeks for their spring break.
I have to fight being concerned about their safety while they are there. I rejoice and love the fact that they have servant hearts and want to help people. I just struggle with worrying about them. God has given me a great measure of peace on the trips Will has been on and now I pray He will give me peace as they both head over there together.
The article below really hit me over the head. I want to really live out loud exuding joy and faith. I want my expectations to be positive about everything. I do pretty good most of the time but I want to REALLY let go and trust because deep down I know the end of the story and I am not afraid
Father God, please take my fears and turn them into joy and peace in You.
Evil Forebodings

by Joyce Meyer - posted February 01, 2012

All the days of the desponding and afflicted are made evil [by anxious thoughts and forebodings], but he who has a glad heart has a continual feast [regardless of circumstances]. —Proverbs 15:15

Shortly after I began to seriously study the Bible, I felt an oppressive atmosphere around me. Everything seemed gloomy—as if something bad was going to happen. It wasn’t anything I could explain, just a vague, dreaded sense of something evil or wrong about to happen.

“Oh, God,” I prayed. “What’s going on? What is this feeling?”

I had hardly uttered the question when God spoke to me. “Evil forebodings.”

I had to meditate on that for several minutes. I had never heard the phrase before. God had spoken to me, and I stayed quiet before Him so I could hear the answers.

I realized, first of all, that my anxieties weren’t real—that is, they were not based on true circumstances or situations. I was having problems—as most of us do—but they were not as critical as the devil was making it appear.

My acceptance of his lies, even though they were vague, was opening the door for the evil forebodings. I eventually realized that I had lived in the midst of similar gloomy feelings most of my life. I was expecting something bad to happen instead of aggressively expecting something good. I felt a dread, an unexplained anxiety around me. I couldn’t put my finger on anything specific—only that sense of something evil or terrible.

The Living Bible says, “When a man is gloomy, everything seems to go wrong.” That’s how I felt, as if something—maybe everything—was wrong or was about to go wrong.

As previously stated, I realized that for most of my life, I had been miserable because of evil thoughts and anxious forebodings.

As I continued to meditate on evil forebodings, God broke through and gave me a clear revelation. I was miserable because my thoughts were miserable—my thoughts were poisoning my outlook. My thoughts robbed me of the ability to enjoy my life. I should have been saying, “Thank You, God, for today. Thank you for Dave and my children and my friends and all Your blessings.” But, instead of being positive, I found myself even dreading to answer the phone when it rang, for fear it might be bad news.

All of this gloom and doom that surrounded me began in my abusive childhood. I endured a great deal of misery, and most of my life was unhappy and filled with disappointments. I began to live in a vague fear and dread of the future. I had not been taught to let go of what was behind. I couldn’t rejoice in what I had now and the good things going on in my life. I focused on the past and what might lie ahead—and what lay ahead was usually gloom and doom and chaos because that was what I was expecting. Satan had built a stronghold in my mind, and I was trapped until I learned I could tear down that negative, evil stronghold by applying God’s Word to my life and circumstances.

I once had a friend whom I’ll call Marlene. She lived in a state of constant chaos. One day she had health problems. The next day Marlene’s son had lost his job, and they were going to have to support him and his family.

As soon as that was over, another traumatic situation would erupt. Marlene was a Christian, but she lived in fear of bad news. Marlene would not have known how to live a life that was not filled with chaos. All of her conversation was negative and gloomy. Even her countenance was sad and gloomy.

I realized that I had started to become like Marlene—I was miserable because I had allowed Satan to rob me of the ability to enjoy my life. It took a while before I was able to be positive most of the time, but little by little, my thinking changed, and so did my life. I no longer live in evil forebodings, expecting to hear at any moment of a new problem.

Now I purposely expect good things to happen in my life. I realize now that I can choose my thoughts. I don’t have to accept Satan’s lies.

Like everyone else, negative things do happen to me from time to time, but I don’t become negative because of them. I remain positive, and that helps me enjoy my life even in the midst of the storms.

Dear Lord Jesus, through so many days in my life, I have been robbed of my joy and contentment by evil forebodings. As those feelings come to me, please remind me that You are in control. Help me to rest in You and rejoice in Your power in my life. Amen.

This is good food for thought. I think I live like this a lot of the time. I am a worrier and I know I let Satan rule my mind way too much.  I want to be more positive and cheerful and not let down thoughts take over my days.  I am not sure about the "God spoke to me" talk in the article above, as in did she hear His voice? I think we get too caught up in the being uptight about that. I do know that God speaks to us through His Holy Spirit in our minds and hearts if we wait and listen. He impresses ideas and thoughts on our minds if we wait upon Him and commune with Him.

I have lately wondered alot about this empty nest path that we are now on. So many thoughts that are just too deep or complicated to put on a blog...and so I have been pretty quiet.  When what you have done for years and years (mothering) is now kind of put on the back burner with occasional spurts of helping out, it is quite interesting to try to find what you are meant to be working at in this phase of life.  There is a feeling and urgency that it be more important to the kingdom of God than just chasing after comforts and enjoying life.  Lots to think about.  I know I am not alone in this examination of how we have lived our lives and how we want to live the rest of it.  I just want every day to matter for Him.

Ok...enough of the recesses of my confused mind.

I have been dreaming a little of this scene. For years while our kids were growing up we would pack up the tent and camping gear and head south to this gorgeous location. About this time every spring I get the itch to head to Big Bend country.I can smell the dry air and dirt and cactus and hear the doves cooing and bee's buzzing and donkey's braying from across the Rio Grande.  I long to feel the warm sun and phones or tv's or well...anything but nature and communing with family and God. 

Think I will check Map Quest to see how far a drive this is from home (gas prices may keep us from actually getting there) but...sometimes we just need peace and quiet and desert views.

Blessings on your day. Love, Amy


Becky K. said...

I just ordered a book on the subject of worry last evening. Some of us at church are going to read it at the same time and then we'll discuss it during our fellowship time on Sunday afternoons. :-) It is so hard to "let it go" after our entire parenting experience has been about keeping them alive from all that they get into.

Vickie said...

Amy, I'm with you. I'm a worry-wart, too. I went thru a deep depression about 4 years ago, and that sense of foreboding comes back from time to time. I know that Satan is trying to rob me of my joy. That's what was missing - I was a joyful person before my depression, and I kept telling the Dr. that I needed my joy and zest for life back. I'm getting there and the foreboding feeling is less and less. Glad you found YOUR joy, too, and it all comes from the Lord!

Love that part of Texas. We used to go on mission trips through the Davis Mtns into Mexico, and I always loved going through all that different landscape. Texas IS a land of contrasts! Blessings upon your two boys!

Wa Wa Waughs said...

How do we cope with the Marlenes in our life? They get me down. It's so easy to say, "Cheer up!" But it doesn't come easily. Jesus Calling has a great thought about Self-Pity today, Feb. 23.

I have been waiting for you to tell me how to cope with the empty nest. I am 2/3 of the way there. But there's no way I'll ever know until I get there. I am totally enjoying the times though they are few and far between with my last one here at home.

Love and blessings to you!

Warren Baldwin said...

Great article, and that is wonderful about your two boys. Great hearts.

We've enjoyed your music cds. Very good.

Were you a Karen Carpenter fan? I have a post up about her now. And the post about Excuses that is showing is actually not posted yet. I was supposed to hit "save" not "Post." It is based on a story from Brad's book. Will post in a week or two. wb

Sandi said...

Thank you for this!