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Combating Worry with Worship & Rest

Sunday, March 12 Lent Calendar* Invite: Attend worship. Practice the discipline of rest by taking a nap or a quiet time for a half hour.

In yesterday’s blogpost, my friend Dianne gave three tips to help when you are worried and stress. I am going to add two more based on today’s Lent invite:

When worried or stressed, find solace in Christian community. A church member once told me, “I am a natural worry wort. But worship helps me not to worry so much. When I go to worship on Sunday, there is always something that reminds me that God is bigger than all my worries. I am also reminded that I am not alone, but that there is probably a bunch of worry worts sitting in those pews and somehow we can help each other out.” Her words made me think of Michael W. Smith’s song “Surrounded” (Fight My Battles)." The song begins with the speaking of these words, “The Word says that for the spirit of heaviness, put on the garment of praise. That’s how we fight our battles.” When I am battling, I play that song of worship and remember that I am surrounded by God even though I feel surrounded by muck.

When worried or stressed... or overwhelmed or head spinning or body tired or just in need of a break... find rest in a little nap or quiet time. Last week, I was touring people through our early childhood center. The children were just settling down for a nap. One of the teachers had her door open and quietly said, “Feel free to peak inside.” The four-year-olds were on their cute little cots and all had blankies. The lights were dim. Soft music was playing. I joked, “Can I come for nap time?” It looked so inviting, so peaceful. I had had a non-stop morning of unexpected turns and trouble shooting. Sometimes the best thing to do in those circumstances is is to stop and take a little quiet time. What is essential in those quiet times is to make sure that you put worry and your "to do lists"on a shelf and let it sit there while you refuel.

Though modern day culture seems to clutter Sundays with too many things, Sundays - or the Sabbath day - have an ancient history, still needed today, in setting the life giving rhythms of worship and rest. May you do both today and feel strengthened and renewed.

*Find the daily Lent calendar here; or for the Lent calendar more specific to Ascension Lutheran Church, go here.

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