If you know me personally, this post may be too much information. Proceed with caution. For those of you who don’t know me, this post may be too much information. Consider yourself warned 🙂
I like toots. I call them toots because it’s far daintier than calling them farts. I’m the kind of toot-lover that will cry laughing at a movie scene centered around uncontrollably passing gas. I guess it’s my inner junior high boy (though my toots never stink).
There’s a duck that follows me around my house. He appears anytime there’s a “funny sound”. In the past I blamed the baby in my arms for any unsociable toots that may have snuck out. Now I have my faithful duck. And the kids love it. When the duck “quacks” behind me, my Little Man asks, “Was that really a duck mom?”
We’ll never know…
I don’t tell many people about my love of toots (you can keep a secret, right?) for two reasons:
1. Most parishioners don’t want to know their pastor’s wife takes joy in gas (see warning above).
2. My kids don’t know the weapon they wield with their own toots.
Let me explain. There are times I have been disciplining Little Sister and with an expressionless face, she squeaks out a machine gun load of toots. I can do nothing but laugh. It totally diffuses any frustration I have in the moment. Who can be mad with that kind of innocence?
If my kids could train themselves to pass gas on command, it would force me to smile in those tough moments.
Toots remind me to relax a little bit. To take a step back and reconsider what’s happening.
For whatever reason, cutting the cheese tickles my funny bone and reconnects me with my kids. They distract me from my in-the-moment emotion, and put me in giggles.
Did you know the same strategy can work for worry?
I’m not suggesting toots can overpower worry. Otherwise I would suggest eating baked beans and watching this all day! But relaxing and taking a step back can sometimes help us battle worry.
When a worrisome thought comes into my mind, I welcome it in to stay longer by continuing to think about it. The thought settles in and invites other worrisome thoughts until my head is filled with unwelcome guests.
The best way to kick them out is to take a mental step back and refocus on truth found in God’s Word.
A great truth in a moment of worry is that of peace.
I have told you these things, so that you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.
And in John 14:7 Jesus describes this peace
Peace I leave with you; my peace I give. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let our hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.
Forget not the powerful blessing in Philippians 4:7
…the peace of God, which passes all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus.
And a reminder of the spirit of God in us
For God has not given us a spirit of fear and timidity, but of power, love, and self-discipline.
Sometimes it’s difficult to recall God’s truths in the midst of worry. There are times when I’ve gone so far into worry that I can’t think straight. In these moments the best way to refocus is say,
Jesus, Jesus, Jesus!
I call on His name to help me take a step back from the lies swirling in my head, and refocus them on His promise of peace.
So next time you’re in a moment of frustration or worry, consider how you can relax and shift your focus. In some situations, it’s a toot. In others, it’s God’s Word. Either way, there’s power in taking a step back and refocusing.
What are some ways you shift your focus from worry?
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