Worry is a choice, for the most part…
Jesus’ known Sermon on the Mount derives from Matthew’s Gospel, chapters 5-7. Within that is a segment where Jesus talks about worry.
Jesus says in Matthew 6:25-34,
25 “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? 26 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? 27 And can any of you by worrying add a single hour to your span of life? 28 And why do you worry about clothing? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow; they neither toil nor spin, 29 yet I tell you, even Solomon in all his glory was not clothed like one of these. 30 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? 31 Therefore do not worry, saying, ‘What will we eat?’ or ‘What will we drink?’ or ‘What will we wear?’ 32 For it is the Gentiles who strive for all these things; and indeed your heavenly Father knows that you need all these things. 33 But strive first for the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well. 34 “So do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will bring worries of its own. Today’s trouble is enough for today.
~Matthew 6:25-34 (New Revised Standard Version)
I suggest out of this we may think of worry as a choice, again, for the most part.
I think of there being different types of worry. In general we can say there is warranted worry and unwarranted worry. Warranted worry is the kind where your friend or family member gets into an accident and they are in the hospital. You are going to naturally worry about how there are doing, if they are going to be all right, and so on. This type worry comes and it goes with events. This worry happens to you.
Unwarranted worry is a different kind of mentality. This worry is the kind where it can always be on your mind, it can be multiple worries stacking up, or the worry itself is of something unclear. An example would be searching for a job. You may not know what you will find or when you will find it. That can create worry. You may worry about an exam you have to take and whether you will do well on it or not. This worry happens from you.
Jesus suggests worry can extend into the kind of thinking where you wonder about what you will eat, what you will drink, and what will you wear. Those worries are of basic needs, but they are still worries.
Have you ever worried about something but worrying did not change the outcome? What good then is worrying? Jesus asks if worry can add to your life at all.
The inference is worrying does not help better the outcome. Worrying only serves to break you down internally.
Try on a different hat for a day, a worry-free hat. If what constantly worries you right now is a job hunt, money, a relationship, school, or something else stirring worry inside of you, give it up for a day! Give it up for a week even.
The main thing to change will be your internal thinking. Events will still be happening outside of you, but your internal thought process can change for the better. From now on you can take on a new perspective to whatever problems face you. You can be free from worry and experience another kind of thinking, one perhaps with even more joy.
Worry does not add to your life. Joy does.
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