I think each and every one of us has something that they struggle with. Truthfully, I feel like part of being human means having struggles and things that we have to deal with through life. For some, the struggles can vary with the different seasons of life. For others, they have a struggle that continues with them for most of their lives. Sometimes, the struggle can be outward, such as struggling with an addiction. However, in other instances, it can be more of an internal struggle.
When asked if I have a struggle, I will not hesitate to say ‘absolutely’. My struggles have changed throughout my life, but one that I have dealt with for years and one I will most likely continue to struggle with is this: worry.
I know some of you may think that worry isn’t a real struggle or that everyone worries and it’s just a part of life, so it’s no big deal. However, some of you may also really struggle with worry. If we really look at it, worry is a sin. Yes, it may not be an outward, obvious sin like lying, cheating, stealing, etc. But worrying is not trusting that God has a plan and that He will work all things out. Throughout the Bible, we are called to trust God. Psalms 62:8 says “Trust in him at all times, you people; pour out your hearts to him, for God is our refuge”. Proverbs 3:5 tells us to “Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding”. Isaiah 26:4 says “Trust in the Lord forever, for the Lord, the Lord himself, is the Rock eternal”. When we don’t obey what God’s Word tells us to do, that is a sin.
So, is there anything that can be done? Believe me, if I had an immediate cure for worry, I would share it with everyone! But, as much of a cheesy Sunday School answer as it sounds like, the real cure for worry really is God. Worry involves laser focusing on a situation, real or imagined, and obsessing over it. So the focus needs to be shifted and God’s Word provides great things to shift one’s focus to and a way to shift one’s focus. Philippians 4:8 notes that “…whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable-if anything is excellent or praiseworthy-think about such things”. If you’re like me, the things that I worry about typically don’t fall into those categories because I worry about an imagined situation, going to the worst possible scenario. But that is not right or true, it’s not excellent or praiseworthy. When I choose to shift my focus on the things I know to be true and right, excellent and praiseworthy, I seem to stop worrying.
I know it’s not always so simple. I’m definitely not a licensed healthcare worker, but for some, overcoming a struggle may not be as easy as shifting your focus to other things, but, rather, overcoming a struggle requires the assistance of others such as medical doctors, counselors, therapists or psychiatrists. Those doctors or psychiatrists may suggest medication to assist for certain struggles. And that is alright too! God has allowed for some great individuals to enter into the medical field and resources to be developed to help some of us in our struggles as well.
It’s easy to look our struggles as something that we just have to suck it up and deal with. But God is greater and, however we deal with our struggles, whether we find personal ways of dealing or do have the help of others, we are not alone. He is with us always and will help us overcome.