Sunday, January 25, 2015

The Diagnosis - Mary Heart / Martha World [Week 3]

When I read the list on pg. 33 'Ten Signs of a Big Worrier', I found myself to be 8 of the 10 :)

I. Am. A. Worrier.

I go through seasons of life when I worry more than others, but worry comes easily to me. I usually find something to worry about on a daily basis.

This chapter is such an encouragement to this worrying mama.

I love the illustration Joanna writes comparing worry to a thick fog.....

While physical fog may seem dense and almost solid, scientist tell us that a fog bank a hundred feet deep and covering seven city blocks is composed of less than one glass of water. Divided into billions of droplets, it hasn't much substance. Yet it has the power to bring an entire city to a standstill. [pg. 35-36]

This picture exposes the truth about worry. It is made of so little, yet yields the power to consume and paralyze us.

Later she gets to the root of this issue on worry when she includes a quote from Gary E. Gilley.

Worry is allowing problems and distress to come between us and the heart of God. It is the view that God has somehow lost control of the situation and we cannot trust Him. A legitimate concern presses us closer to God and causes us to lean and trust on Him all the more. [pg. 38]

I may tell myself the need for worry is great because of the importance of the issue at hand. But, I could not list for you 99.9% of the things I worried about over my lifetime.

The truth is I fear a potential future event because I have stopped trusting God.

The problem is not the one in one million things that may or may not possibly happen. The problem is that when I worry, I have stopped trusting God.

I find this comforting, because I have felt so helpless to my incessant worry. How could I be anything but helpless in situations where I am battling in my mind over 'potentials' and 'what if's'.......reviewing over and over conversations that will probably never happen the way I envision them.

God's Word speaks directly and specifically about this problem of worry.

Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your request be made known to God.
And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus. Philippians 4: 6-7 

As Joanna writes on page 40, the steps to combat worry have been laid out for us in scripture.

Be anxious about nothing.  Be prayerful about everything. Be thankful for all things.

I am thankful for what it says in verse 7. With these three things, we receive the Lord's peace that not only defies our logic but also guards our hearts and minds!

That is what I need, a guard for my heart and my mind.

So this week, we are challenged.......

Will we pray? Will we be worried? We really can't do both. [pg. 42]

Let's talk about it.....

If you feel led, please comment below about all or just one of these items. We will focus on this chapter all week, so please jump in any day you find time. Also, please feel free to respond to others who have commented, let us encourage each other.

1. The third step to gaining victory over worry is to 'be thankful for all things'. What is something you will remind yourself you are thankful of this week?

2. Page 47 includes 'Top Ten Ways to Tame Your Worry Habit'. Which of these do you find most helpful? Is there one you will try this week?

3. What spoke most to you from this chapter?

I look forward to hearing form you :)

- brook.

* All quotes mentioned above are noted by page number and are taken from 'Having a Mary Heart in a Martha World' by Joanna Weaver.

** Find out more about Joanna's ministry and how to purchase her books here.


  1. Oh my word. This chapter. This whole chapter is why I NEEDed to read this book. I've heard this message before, but never put in such a way. It's like she was in my head! Nothing like a fellow worrier pointing out the secret specific arguments you have that support this nasty habit. I will be vulnerable. I have STRUGGLED with fretting over world news and events. But like Joanna points out, instead of rehearsing our concerns, ( most over things with unknown outcomes) we can turn it over to God in prayer. Worry is very wicked if you think about it. It destroys relationships, our sanity, and our trust in a God who loves us. The opposite of faith and trust. Just the thought alone of risking intimacy with my God is enough for me to desire the end of this crazed cycle I get myself into. Lord, more of you, less of this worry! What a blessing He wants to carry this burden for me!

  2. "Lord, more of you, less of this worry! What a blessing He wants to carry this burden for me!"

    Yes, and amen. I am repeating this with you, friend. I am glad you are as encouraged by this chapter as I am. Thanks for your input.

  3. I love this chapter as well. Of all of the messages of in the New Testament this one speaks the loudest to me. Worry comes so easily. I do think that being thankful is the best cure for worry. I love the idea of having a thanksgiving journal. Ending the day with one thought of thankfulness. To tame the worry habit, exercise, talking about it and controlling my imagination are the most helpful methods for me. I also really limit my intake of the news. I still want to know what is going on, but I just can't let it be the background noise in my house filling my mind all day. Thanks for sharing Brook!

  4. I came back to revisit and love the idea of limiting the news and keeping the thankful journal. Thanks for sharing!

  5. I think this chapter was written just for ME. I can't begin to tell you how timely this chapter was for me. God is so creative. I love your beautiful words about it too. God taught me something life-changing during the reading of this chapter: when I focus on my worries and anxieties, it's almost as if I am worshiping the enemy because of all the attention and power that I give him when I worry. And I want to be a woman who honors God in all I say and do, and focusing on anything that comes from the enemy is certainly NOT honoring to The Lord. This has helped me tremendously these last two weeks. I want to trust God with it all. Thanks, Brook!

  6. The Lord is so creative and so, so in tune with the needs of our heart. It is amazing how he shepherds us through His word as well as through the writing of others. This book has definitely been a vessel for me to learn more about Him. Thanks for your thoughts.

  7. Ashley,
    I like your idea of ending the day with thankfulness. It always seems the days that are the worst are the best days to cling to a spirit of thankfulness.

    You included such a great list of ideas to help with worry. Thanks for sharing.

  8. When my husband and I first started dating his mother had open heart surgery after multiple, major heart attacks. David always attributed her heart issues from smoking and worrying. His confidence that worrying was a main contributor to her major health problems, that depleted her quality of life, had a huge impact on my own life. I am grateful that his influence and self-assurance allowed me to never develop that trait of worrying about the many facets of life.
    I have found the quickest extinguisher of worry is prayer. Thankfulness is the opposite of worry and it allows you to step out of your own self and look at things a different way. A verse that brings me knowledge of God's love and his perspective is : Matthew 6:25-17 "Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothes? Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they? Can any one of you by worrying add a single hour to your life?"