Today I write on the weight of worry. It makes me think back to a story of the lady and the glass.
A psychology professor decided to teach her students a lesson on the principles of stress management. So, she raised a glass of water to the classroom. Her students expected her to ask the “glass half empty or glass half full” question. Instead, the professor asked, “How heavy is this glass of water that I am holding?”
The Students shouted out answers that ranged from eight ounces to a couple pounds. She replied, “From my perspective, the actual weight of this glass doesn’t matter. It truly depends on how long I hold it. If I hold it for a minute, it feels light. If I hold it for an hour straight, its weight makes my arm hurt a little. If I tried to hold it for a day straight, my arm would probably cramp up, go completely numb, and ultimately cause me to drop the glass. In each case, the weight of the glass doesn’t change, but the longer I hold it, the heavier it feels to me.”
The professor continued, “Your worries are much like this glass of water. Think about them for a while and nothing happens. Worry a bit longer and you begin to ache a little. Focus all day on your worries, and you will feel completely numb and emotionally paralyzed“.
I like this story because it reminds me of the effect of carrying my worries. And, in my work, many of my clients have great worries that they carry. When we think of pain and suffering and emotional trauma, it truly is a question of whether we carry the worry or whether we can put it down.
I am strengthened by I Peter 5:7, “Casting all your care upon Him, for He cares for you”. Of course, I also smile when I read Luke 12:7 where I am reminded that “And even the very hairs of your head are numbered, Fear not…”. Even though I might not have many hairs… God knows! Good Bible verses in combating worry.