by Steve Goodier
What does it mean to worry? The Latin concept of worry describes
a turbulent force within a person. Worry is a heart and mind in
The ancient Greeks thought of worry as something that tears a
person in two and drags that person in opposite directions. It is
like opposing forces in deadly conflict within the very being of
The word "worry" itself comes from an old Anglo-Saxon term
meaning to choke, or strangle, and that is exactly what it does -
it chokes the joy of living wage right out of its victim. And it
chokes off the energy to improve one's condition.
There is a place for healthy concern, but too often our concern
turns into fearful worry. And worry, more than the problem,
becomes our real enemy.
Some people have worried for so long that they have become good
at it. Just as we can become good at any attitude or behavior if
we practice it enough, we can also become good at worrying. Worry
is habit - a habitual response to life's problems.
I rather like the attitude of the late United Methodist Bishop
Welch. When he reached the age of 101, he was asked if he didn't
think a lot about dying. With a twinkle in his eye, he replied,
"Not at all! When was the last time you heard of a Methodist
bishop dying at 101?" Maybe one reason for his longevity is that
he never developed the habit of worry.
Next time you feel yourself worrying, be like the frogs - they
eat what bugs them. Decide to no longer practice needless worry
and instead practice peace. Replace your habit of fearful worry
with the habit of courageous action. As Harvey Mackey has said,
"Good habits are as addictive as bad habits and a lot more
rewarding." Practice joy. Practice faith. And practice courage.
Soon your life will be too rich and full for worry.
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