Natural disasters. Civil unrest. In challenging times fear can be widespread. To help shift fear to faith, Silent Unity is inviting the world community to unite in prayer for 30 days by affirming the following prayer: The healing, harmonizing spirit of God is present in my life and all life. Peace, order, harmony, and well-being are restored.
Calming the Worry Monsters
By Ian Lawton
There is an old monastery in Europe perched high on a cliff several hundred feet in the air. The only way to reach the monastery is to be suspended in a basket which is pulled to the top by several monks who pull and tug with all their strength.
Obviously the ride up the steep cliff in the basket is terrifying. One tourist got really nervous about halfway up as he noticed that the rope was old and frayed. With a trembling voice he asked the monk who was riding with him in the basket how often they changed the rope. The monk thought for a moment and answered cheekily, “Whenever it breaks.”
Life is full of moments like this. Our hold on life is old and frayed, we never know when or how things will snap, and we’re often dependent on other people. The best, most careful driver can die in a car accident at the hands of another driver being careless. You can send your kids to school in the safest neighborhood and find them the victims of a deranged gunman (just ask the people of Newtown Connecticut).
Every day is full of situations we can’t fully control. What if? What if I don’t get the job? What if my car breaks down in the middle of nowhere? What if I can’t get into my preferred graduate school? What if I never find the right person to marry? What if I move, and still don’t find what I’m looking for? What if I get pregnant and the baby has a rare disorder? What if? Worry is a challenge for all of us at times. … Often worry is just a projection of our own fears and expectations.
Worry is not all bad, but it’s not all it thinks it is. Worry about the future sometimes serves a purpose. It helps you to trouble shoot potential pitfalls. You can play them out in your mind, almost like rehearsing the future. Then you can either dismiss the worry because you’ve seen how irrational it is, or you can plan for it, or you can just accept it if it’s something you can’t control.
It’s all about mastery; letting worries work for you, not being run by worry. With awareness of what’s playing out in your mind, you can steer worry in helpful directions. If you let worry run your life, it will do so with glee.
Mastering worry has a lot to do with timing. Decide to address issues IF and when they arise, but not a moment sooner. As Atticus Finch often told his kids in To Kill a Mockingbird, “It’s not time to worry yet.”
Silent Unity would love to hear from you. Please share any thoughts, reflections, and blessings you received during the 30 Days of Fearless Living prayer initiative.
If you have a prayer request, please use the online form and it will be placed in our Prayer Vigil Chapel for 30 days of continuous prayer.