Meditations by John Dean

Monday, December 7, 2015

The Old Swimming Hole

(Proverbs 12:25 Message)  Worry weighs us down; a cheerful word picks
us up.

The reason I have taken our text from the Message is because it uses words that clearly describe what worry actually does to us. In other words, worry is like carrying a fifty pound weight around all day.

I realize there are many things in life that cause one to be concerned but there is a big difference between being concerned and worrying. Being concerned is a gift from God whereas worry is not.

For example:
·       Worry is problem oriented whereas concern is solution oriented.
·       Worry distracts us…concern focuses us
·       Worry disables planning…concern helps us plan.
·       Worry blurs our vision…concern clarifies our purpose.
·       Worry tends to give up…concern perseveres.
·       Worry exaggerates…concern pinpoints problems.
·       Worry focuses on self…concern cares for other.

If Satan can distract one by changing a concern into worrying then he has done his job.

Worry is also dangerous to one’s health because it triggers the release of stress hormones that over a prolonged period of time can raise the levels of these chemicals in one’s body to a dangerous level. As a result of these stress hormones being released it can,

   1. Weakens one’s immune system
   2. Cause cancer
   3. Heart Disease
   4. Hypertension
   5. Alzheimer’s disease and other brain cell damage
   6. Loss of concentration
   7. Weight gain

Because worry is a choice then one could conclude that God holds on responsible for choosing to worry rather then exercising their faith. Hebrews 11:6 says that, “without faith it is impossible to please God”. Perhaps one of the reasons is because worry can ultimately destroy one’s body which is the temple of the Holy Ghost. That means we can either choose to live in faith or fear.

I have always been inspired by the fact that kids never seem to worry…only adults. I remember years ago in the piney words of East Texas that every creek seemed to have a swimming hole.

When school was out for the summer and the kids were not working on the farm then they could usually be found down at the creek cooling off at the swimming hole. There was always an ample supply of little naked boys to fill each and every swimming hole in every creek

I can still hear all of those playful sounds of laughter through the piney woods as the kids would run and jump into the water, or swing from a rope or jump off of tree limbs.

Little did those kids know that one day they would  have to make the choice to either live by faith or be destroyed by worry. Wow! How is it possible to go from the cool refreshing waters of one’s own swimming hole to the grim reality of growing up?

However, for those who made the choice to live by faith and be optimistic then life has provided for them a spiritual swimming hole that is a lot more refreshing than the best of East Texas creeks. I know because God has done that for me.

Help those who have chosen the path of worry with no solution to change to the path of concern that produces solutions. Father we thank You for Your love and for the Holy Spirit to guide us as we all face these decisions.

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