I told worry to take a hike once and for all.
I used the words in my son’s favorite Dr. Seuss book, “Please go now!” Except maybe I didn’t say, “please.”
My fight with worry started last week when my oldest child’s parent-teacher conference was approaching. Our record with parent-teacher conferences isn’t exactly the greatest. Most of them involve me sitting on the other side of the table feeling as though I am the only advocate for my child.
Don’t get me wrong. I love teachers. Some of the most influential people in my life have been teachers. Some of the best ones saw qualities in me I never saw in myself.
But when it comes to my six-year-old, the track record has not been stellar. Usually I leave the conference asking myself, “Am I missing something here?”
So, I wasn’t sure if I was going to schedule a conference. It was, after all, optional. Maybe we could just use a day off.
But I had this nagging feeling in the pit of my stomach. My first grader was coming up with negative reports on his behavior. My husband and I were working through it but I didn’t feel like we were getting to the bottom of the cause.
That’s when my inner worrier kicked in. My mind raced ahead to endless possibilities of what would happen if this problem continued. It raced ahead of God’s grace and provision into the unknown.
Into a place where I had no control.
Into the classroom at the conference, imagining conversations that would never take place. It really got quite ridiculous.
So, against what I thought was better judgment, I scheduled the conference. I prayed for God to be present and for his Spirit to guide us in asking the right questions.
As my husband and I sat talking with my son’s teacher, I could not have been more surprised. She was understanding. She wanted to work with us as a team. She knew that it was a long day for a six-year-old.
Afterwards, as I reflected on the words exchanged, I realized all my worrying had been for nothing. I praised God for the peace I now had.
And then I wondered, if the conference had not gone well would my worrying have changed anything? No. No, it wouldn’t.
In Philippians Paul tells us, “Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.” Philippians 4:6
But he doesn’t just give us instruction. He also gives us a promise for what will happen when we do this. “And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.” Philippians 4:7
When we pray through circumstances we can’t control, we place our faith in a God who is in control.
When we offer praise and thanksgiving even though we’re unsure of the outcome, we find peace.
So that day after the conference, I sent worry packing. I know he’ll try to rear his head again soon. And when he does, I will remember the words of Paul.
I will remember in the midst of situations I can’t predict, I can trust the One who goes before me.
I can give thanks even in the unknown.
*Linking up with Suzie Eller’s #LiveFreeThursday. Come join us and be inspired.