on worry and getting past worry

I’ve always been a worrier. It drove my parents crazy. It has driven me crazy at times. In recent years I have done better, but it’s easy to lapse back into worry. Of course the things I worry about are generally things I can do nothing about. Like Congress trying to destroy the U.S. economy because the Republicans hate Obama and the Democrats hate the Republicans. Or the lack of rain in Northern California. Or being hit by the next wave of workforce reduction at my job. It’s helpful for me to remember the Zen proverb (which I frequently fail to do):

quote If the problem has a solution, worrying is pointless, in the end the problem will be solved. If the problem has no solution, there is no reason to worry, because it can’t be solved.

I came across this on Facebook from the good folks at Weavings Journal:

quote Do not look forward to what might happen tomorrow. The same everlasting Father who cared for you today will care for you tomorrow and every day. Either he will shield you from suffering or he will give you unfailing strength to bear it. Be at peace, then, and put aside all anxious thoughts and imaginations.
—St. Francis de Sales

That helps too. And it reminds me of the words of Jesus in the Sermon on the Mount, as recorded by Matthew.

quote Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink, or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothing? Look at the birds of the air; they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they? And can any of you by worrying add a single hour to your span of life? And why do you worry about clothing? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow; they neither toil nor spin, yet I tell you, even Solomon in all his glory was not clothed like one of these. But if God so clothes the grass of the field, which is alive today and tomorrow is thrown into the oven, will he not much more clothe you—you of little faith?

We’ve seen these words so many times that it’s often easy not to really hear them.

Staying in the present moment is so important, but not always easy to do. Sometimes, though, I can get there. The Matthew passage reminds me this:

Yes, I know I’ve posted this more than once before, but I like it a lot and it helps put things in perspective for me.

Here’s to letting go of worry.

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