Are You the Parent of a Teen in Crisis?

Interview with Author and Parent Stacy Lee Flury

Today I have a special treat for my blog subscribers. It is my interview with author Stacy Lee Flury, author of the life-changing devotional titled Turning the Tide of Emotional Turbulence. If you are the parent of a teen in crisis or know a teen in crisis, you will especially benefit from Stacy’s insights during this interview.  

NOTE: There is no podcast to accompany this week’s post.  

MARYANN:
Stacy, welcome to my blog! I am so honored to have you here today. Please tell us a little about yourself and how you came to write the exceptional and much-needed devotional titled Turning the Tide of Emotional Turbulence.

STACY:
Thank you for your invitation. To share a little about myself, I have been married for 37 years, have two daughters, two grandchildren, and one dog and three cats. I have been involved in children and youth ministries for over 15 years and now sing on the worship team at my local church and blog to parents who are hurting.

Ten years ago, my youngest daughter started to exhibit some troubling and concerning issues.  As she aged, they became worse, and we did not understand the root of where they were coming from.  Some of these problems were self-injury, sub-culture identities, gender issues, porn, risk-taking and destructive behaviors, such as depression and suicidal ideology, to name a few. 

It wasn’t until much later that she was diagnosed with PTSD, anxiety, and borderline personality disorder. Eventually, the problems escalated so much, we went into counseling.  That was the best step for me personally. 

Through an assignment given to me from my counselor, I was asked to write about my own depression that was brought on by parenting a child in constant crisis.  Those moments of journaling turned into a blog.  From there, God laid upon my heart that there were thousands of parents who were struggling and broken like I was in trying to help their child in crisis.  He encouraged me through confirmations to write a book.  A devotional book for parents just like me. That book is Turning the Tide of Emotional Turbulence.

MARYANN:
Parents of teens in crisis face struggles that most parents might consider foreign to their own parenting experience.  These are not the struggles involving ordinary teen challenges. They are far deeper, far more complex, and far more overwhelming. What advice would you give to a parent who has been blindsided by a teen in crisis? Where should that parent turn first?

STACY:
They first need to know that they are NOT alone.  Many parents such as myself, hid behind a facade to hide what was going on in their home and lives.  It felt shameful, embarrassing. We carried a lot of guilt and failure as parents.  It is not always the parent’s fault.  A teen and young adult are old enough to make some of their own choices and decisions.  Mind you, there are also some children who have severe illnesses and disorders.  Again, this is NOT the fault of the parent.  So release the guilt and blame on yourself. 

Secondly, you will go through various stages of emotions when your child’s issues are exposed and truth comes to the surface.  There is Shock, Unbelief, Anger, Sadness, Guilt, and a plethora of other emotions that you might not have dealt with before. These are all normal.  Connecting with a Counselor for yourself and for your child is the first place to start.  You need that support as well as your child in order to understand the condition of your child, what present things you need to address, and how to move forward with hope.  Also, it is imperative that you connect with the pastoral staff of your church.  If you don’t have any, I would advise to seek out one at a church.  Share only to those (with family and close friends) that you trust so that they can come along side of you and pray for you.  Once all of these are in place, you can start to prepare a plan that will guide your family to healing and restoration.  It will not happen overnight.  It takes time.  So bathe yourself in prayer and the Word.  God will help you along the way. 

MARYANN:
In your book, Stacy, you talk about the “punch of powerlessness”.  You brilliantly describe it as a “swarm of dizzy perpetrated by an unsettling dilemma.”  While we all have faced situations that sent us reeling, in what unique way does the “punch of powerlessness” affect the parent of a teen in crisis?

STACY:
If you have ever seen the Superman hero being hit hard with Cryptonite (the very thing that takes all of his power away), and he drops to the ground powerless, unable to move, holding his head in utter loss, that was me. Anytime something shocking happens, leaving you breathless, and dumbfounded by what you have heard or seen, that in itself is the definition of being punched with powerlessness.

For example, the moment I was just told that my daughter was facing twenty years in prison at the age of 17. You have no control, you are numb, you can’t think straight to what you just heard, and you wonder what you did to fail them.  It doesn’t have to be a situation like this.  A parent could be confronted with the realization that their teen/young adult has a serious addiction problem. Maybe the parent just found out that their son wants to change their gender and be a girl.  Or maybe, their child informed the parents that they are bi-sexual.  

MARYANN:
As an author, what I love most about your book is your willingness to be vulnerable and transparent.  We all struggle with different things in life, and when an author gives us truth rather than platitudes, we connect with that author and her message.  Many parents of teens in crisis are afraid to be open about their struggles. Have you always had this transparency regarding the crises you faced with your teen, or did you have to grow into becoming transparent? If the latter, how did you develop transparency? 

STACY:
In the beginning stages of my daughter’s issues, I kept everything a secret.  I had already felt judged through the actions my daughter was outlandishly doing (like being Goth and writing dark words and images all over her body), so sharing about what was really going on in my home was taboo. This became more personal to me as if I was the one with the problem and I wasn’t helping my daughter the way a parent should. 

With that in mind, I distanced myself from family, friends, and the Church. There came a time, however, that I could no longer do this as my daughter’s problems became so out of control. I put my pride aside and put my daughter first.  That was the beginning of my life being humbled to how God wanted to use my brokenness as well as my daughter to help others.  When I became stronger in my faith through my daughter’s crises, the veil of hiding lowered and my vulnerability was secured in Christ.  There was a freedom I had in my vulnerability that I had not experienced before.  

MARYANN:
Praise the Lord! Stacy, I have known you both as a friend, a fellow writer, and a fellow congregant for a few years now, and I have been greatly inspired by your faith, your endurance, and your adherence to God’s Word. You are a shining example of a Christ-Follower who runs your race with great courage and determination. Please share with our readers a few things you have learned about God’s grace during your journey.

STACY:
I learned that when I was at my lowest and weakest, I also had the most intimate relationship with God. I cried, screamed, threw fits of anger, pleaded, begged, and worshipped like I had never done in the past.  The best part, He bent His ear to hear me. He extended grace and mercy to my family when He didn’t have to. He never gave up on our family.  

MARYANN:
What advice would you give to parents whose marriage is being adversely affected by their teen in crisis?

STACY:
You MUST pray together. It is imperative that you do so.  Otherwise, satan will bring division into the marriage to distract parents from working as a team to help their child.  Another point to know is that each parent has a different way of coping in a crisis with their child. Maybe the husband is quiet and not vocal about the situation over the child. This does not mean he doesn’t care.  He may need time to think and evaluate himself as a parent, his relationship with his child, and future decisions for the healing of their teen/young adult.  The wife may do things very differently as her way of coping.  Neither is wrong.  But spouses need to allow the other to heal and comprehend and move forward in each situation so when that time comes in which they meet to discuss or work on a plan for their child in crisis, they will be totally focused on the child and not themselves.   

MARYANN:
How should parents of a teen in crisis handle the needs of other children in the family who are not in crisis?

STACY:
They need to let the siblings know that although their brother or sister is in crisis, they will still be there for them.  It is important that the child in crisis has a counselor.  This way the issues are being discussed and handled with the counselor, leaving the parents to focus more on the other children.  Other siblings may also need to be in counseling every once in a while so that their voice is heard during this crucial time.  They have many different feelings towards their sibling in crisis.  They could be jealous that their brother or sister is getting more attention.  They could be sad because they feel in some way responsible for their brother or sister in crisis.  They could be angry because their lives have been uprooted and plans changed all because of the issues with the sibling in crisis.  They need to vent too.  They need to feel safe to share what is bothering them too.  

MARYANN:
What kinds of problems did you encounter during the writing of your book? 

STACY:
I can honestly laugh at this.  Let’s see!  I lost my house and my husband lost his business. We went into bankruptcy. I lost many friends who coudln’t understand the challenges of raising a child who was in constant crisis. My relationship with my older daughter fell apart.  We had to leave our church that I was a part of for 40 years in order to find healing for our family at another church.  Crises escalating with our daughter, marriage hurting, and so many attacks on our family in the strangest of ways that would seem like a night flick mystery movie. But GOD IS GOOD!  He replenished, restored, and brought us out of the wilderness.

MARYANN:
Hallelujah!  Our God is always faithful!  Praise His Holy Name! Stacy, shat advice would you give to a writer just starting out? 

STACY:
Don’t give up! Don’t rush. Take your time.  Listen to God’s still small voice. Go to Writer Conferences (many offering virtual) that can give you so many ideas, encouragement, and connections.  

MARYANN:
Do you have any more books in the works? If so, would you give us a glimpse of what lies ahead for readers? 

STACY:
I am waiting to see what the Lord shows me next as to another book. ?

MARYANN:
Well, I know God has great things in store for you, Stacy. Thank you so much for being with us today and for sharing with us from your heart. And blessings on you and your precious family! 

To obtain a copy of Stacy’s book on Amazon, click here.

To obtain a copy of Stacy’s book from her publisher, click on the link below:

https://www.pageantwagonpublishing.com/store/p3/Turning_the_Tide_of_Emotional_Turbulence%3A_Devotions_for_Parents_with_Teens_in_Crisis.html 

To watch a video of an interview with Stacy by Cathy Taylor, founder of Hurting Moms, Mending Hearts, go here:
https://www.facebook.com/watch/live/?v=581113289120153&ref=watch_permalink

Also, I encourage you to connect with Stacy’s ministry via the following venues:

Stacy’s Facebook Page – www.facebook.com/AnchorOfPromise

Stacy’s Blog: www.AnchorOfPromise.com

How to Have Hope When Things Seem Hopeless

by Dr. MaryAnn Diorio

WINNING WITH THE WORD

“Winning with the Word” is a weekly blog that will help you to be a winner in life by applying God’s principles for living the abundant life as found in the Bible, God’s manual for life.

AN INVITATION TO YOU: To follow this blog, click here. 

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Hello and Happy Day! This is Dr. MaryAnn Diorio, Novelist and Life Coach, welcoming you to another episode of Winning with the Word. Today is Monday, April 20, 2020. Today’s Podcast is Episode #16 in Series 2020 and is titled “How to Have Hope When Things Seem Hopeless.”

Lately, I’ve been deeply saddened by the rising number of suicides as a result of the Corona virus. I read of a young nurse in Italy who killed herself when she was diagnosed with the virus. Others are killing themselves as a result of the recent sharp dives in the stock market that have drastically cut their life savings.

What do all of these people have in common? They have all placed their hope in the wrong place.

You see, where we hang our hope will determine if our hope will carry us through bad situations. The people mentioned above hung their hope on things of this world–things that had no solid foundation. Things that will not last. 

Where are you hanging your hope? If on the things of this world–your IRA, your savings account, your job, your vitamins, your medication, your social distancing–all of these things are temporary and will not ultimately protect you. Only Jesus Christ can and will protect you.

There is only solid and secure place where we can hang our hope, and that is on Jesus Christ. In 1 Peter 3: 6 the Bible says this about hoping in Jesus: “Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! According to his great mercy, He has caused us to be born again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead….” Notice this verse calls Christ our “living” hope–a hope that is alive and will remain alive forever.

So, if you want to have hope when things seem hopeless, turn to Jesus Christ, the perfect Hope-Giver. If you have not yet asked Jesus to come into your life and be your hope, do so now. Please pray this simple prayer with me:

Lord Jesus, I have lost my hope. I am discouraged and depressed. Sometimes I want to give up. But You are offering me true hope. So I receive You now as my Savior and Lord. Fill me with Your hope, the hope that never ends. In Your Name I pray. Amen.

If you prayed this simple prayer, please write to me at drmaryann@maryanndiorio.com. I would like to send you a little booklet that will help you get started in your relationship with Jesus Christ. I also encourage you to get yourself a Bible and read it every single day, starting in the Gospel of John, which is in the second half of the Bible. The Bible is God’s love letter to you, His manual for your life. In it He reveals Who He is. In it He reveals His infinite love for you and instructs you how to live.

Finally, ask the Lord to lead you to the church of His choice for you where you can learn about Him and have fellowship and encouragement with other Christ-Followers.

For those of you who may not know, I write fiction about many of the issues I deal with in this blog and podcast. I also invite you to visit my website at https://www.maryanndiorio.com/book-table. There you will find a complete list of the novels, novellas, and short stories I have written about characters with problems like yours. One such story is my latest novel, In Black and White.

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On my website, you will also find many additional resources to help you grow in your walk with Christ.

If you have been blessed by these messages, I also invite you to become a Winning with the Word patron on Patreon. As a patron you will enjoy special benefits only for my patrons. Just go to Patreon.com and search for Winning with the Word to join. I would like to thank all of my patrons who are making this podcast possible. I could not it without you.

And to all of you wonderful listeners out there, thank you so much for listening. This is Dr. MaryAnn Diorio, novelist and life coach, reminding you that God loves you just as you are and just where you are, and that He will help you to keep on winning with the Word.

To subscribe to “Winning with the Word”, click here.

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Now it’s your turn: What do you do to endure in tough times? Please leave your comment in the Comment Box below. Thank you!

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__WHY the Corona Virus?

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__The Coming Global Cataclysm

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__A Parent’s Promise from God

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How to Destroy Depression Once and for All

by Dr. MaryAnn Diorio

WINNING WITH THE WORD

“Winning with the Word” is a weekly blog that will help you to be a winner in life by applying God’s principles for living the abundant life as found in the Bible, God’s manual for life.

AN INVITATION TO YOU: To follow this blog, click here. 

If this blog has blessed you, please encourage your family and friends to subscribe as well. Thank you!

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Do you prefer listening instead of reading? Then click below to listen to today’s blog post:

 

Hello and Happy Day!  This is Dr. MaryAnn Diorio, your Virtual Life Coach, welcoming you to another episode of Winning with the Word. Today is December 23, 2019, and our topic is how to destroy depression once and for all.

Yes, I said destroy—as in get rid of forever!  If you’re depressed, that sounds like beautiful music to your ears.

And it is!

Did you know that the number of depressed people today is greater than the number of people suffering from heart disease and cancer combined? This is a staggering number.

But it does not have to be so.

You see, most advice on destroying depression focuses on the physical and the psychological. Very little advice focuses on the spiritual, which, in truth, is the real root cause of depression.

While the physical and psychological remedies prescribed offer some semblance of relief, the depression rarely is entirely cured. It is merely managed.

But wouldn’t you prefer not just to manage your depression but to get rid of it once and for all?

Well, you can! And today we’re going to talk about how to do that.

First, let’s look at some of the symptoms of depression, While experiencing these symptoms once in a while doesn’t necessarily mean that you are depressed, experiencing them frequently may mean that you are.  Let’s take a look at some of the most common symptoms of depression:

__Feeling hopeless about the future.
__Crying a lot, especially at the drop of a hat.
__Wanting to isolate yourself from people.
__Losing interest in activities you once enjoyed.
__Feeling tired all the time.
__Having trouble focusing or concentrating.
__Thinking of harming yourself or even killing yourself.

If you are experiencing any of these symptoms, what can you do?

Isaiah 61: 3 gives us the answer: “Put on the garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness.”

“What?!?” I can hear you screaming now. “Dr. MaryAnn, are you saying that I’m supposed to praise God when I feel depressed?  You’ve got to be kidding! How can I praise God when all I want to do is die?”

Friend, I am not saying it. God Himself is saying it.  God tells us that the antidote to depression is praising Him!

But how can that be?

Well, it’s like this. Praising God is an act of trust in His love for us. When we trust God, we are expressing faith in Him to deliver us from whatever is coming against us. Praise will drive out depression EVERY SINGLE TIME.

Why? Because depression is an evil spirit that wants to rob you of your joy, your power, and your destiny. And evil spirits get terrified and flee when they hear us praising God. 

Yes, contrary to what medicine and psychology may say, depression is an evil sprit. And yes, an evil spirit can cause physical and mental problems, like a chemical imbalance and suicidal tendencies.  Medicine and psychology may be able to tame those symptoms temporarily, but unless the evil spirit is dealt with, those symptoms will recur.

How is the evil spirit dealt with? Through praising God.

Praising God does not depend on our feelings. It depends on our will.  We can choose to praise God even when we don’t feel like it. In fact, God commands us to praise Him even when we don’t feel like it. Why? Because God knows that praising Him will lift us out of depression and drive it away. 

Philippians 4: 4 commands us to rejoice always. Praising God is a form of rejoicing, and, according to Nehemiah 8: 10, the joy that comes from rejoicing and praising God gives us strength. 

The Bible further tells us in 1 John 3: 8 that Jesus came to destroy the works of the devil. Depression is a work of the devil. In Joel 2: 32 we learn that “whoever calls on the name of the Lord shall be delivered.” When we praise God, we are calling on His Name and He will deliver us from depression and every evil thing.  

In Psalm 22: 3 we read that God inhabits the praises of His people. This means that when we praise God, He comes on the scene.  Because evil spirits cannot tolerate being in the presence of God, they must leave when we praise Him. 

So, the next time you feel depressed, stop what you’re doing, lift up your hands toward Heaven, and start praising the LORD with all of your heart, soul, strength, and mind. Do it despite how you feel. You will be amazed at how depression will flee and you will be filled with the joy of the LORD!

If you have trouble praising God because you do not know Him as your Savior and Lord, I invite you to get to know Him now. Pray this simple prayer with me:

Lord Jesus, I come to You just as I am. I look to You to deliver me from depression and from every other evil thing. I receive You now as my Savior and Lord. Make of me what You created me to be. Amen.

If you prayed this prayer, please write to me at drmaryann@maryanndiorio.com. I would like to send you a little booklet to help get you started in your relationship with Jesus. Also, I invite you to visit my website at maryanndiorio.com. There you will find lots of resources to help you grow in the abundant life that Jesus died to give you.

Thank you for listening. Remember that Jesus Christ loves you just AS you are and just WHERE you are, and He will help you to keep on WINNING WITH THE WORD!

NOTE: I wish to thank blog follower Scott Dauman for recommending this interesting topic. Thank you, Scott, for your valuable input. 

Listen to the podcast here:


Now, it’s YOUR turn:  Have you struggled with depression? If so, what have you done to overcome it? Please leave your response in the Comment Box below. Thank you!

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YOU CAN CONQUER WORRY!

by Dr. MaryAnn Diorio

WINNING WITH THE WORD
by Dr. MaryAnn Diorio

“Winning with the Word” is a weekly blog that will help you to be a winner in life by applying God’s principles
for living the abundant life as found in the Bible, God’s manual for life.

AN INVITATION TO YOU: To follow this blog, click here.  

If this blog has blessed you, please encourage your family and friends to subscribe as well. Thank you!

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Do you prefer listening instead of reading? Then click below on the PODCAST LINK to today’s blog post:

PODCAST: “YOU CAN CONQUER WORRY!”
by Dr. MaryAnn Diorio

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Today we’re going to be exploring a very common problem, one that affects a lot of people in varying degrees. In every case, however, this problem ends up in some way hurting them and those close to them. What am I referring to? I am referring to the problem of worry. 

Are you a worrier? Do you find yourself dreading the future, wondering what bad thing is going to happen next? Are you continually uptight about your finances, your health, your marriage, your children, your job?–to the point that you have a hard time relaxing and having fun? Well, if you answered yes to any of these questions, I have good news for you!

You can conquer worry!

We all know that with anything we wish to accomplish in life, we have to start with a desire to accomplish it. The same is true of conquering worry. You have to want to conquer worry before you can begin doing so. Now, you may be wondering: Who would not want to conquer worry? After all, worry robs us of peace and joy and keeps us in a constant state of inner turmoil.

You may be surprised to learn that there are many people who, deep down inside, do not really want to conquer worry. Strange as it may seem, worry has become for them a sort of status symbol, a sign of “responsibility.” In other words, these people feel important when they worry.

Or, for some people, worry is like an old shoe. They’ve grown comfortable with it and are reluctant to part with it. In fact, some people absolutely refuse to part with worry. It has become so much of a habit in their lives that they cannot imagine living without it. Still, other people hang on to worry because it is a means of drawing attention to themselves. They feel so insecure about themselves that they resort to unhealthful behavior patterns to affirm their worth. By worrying, they attract the attention of others and, in a sick way, that attention satisfies their need for affirmation.

All of the examples I’ve just given are obstacles that keep us from conquering worry. To achieve any level of success and freedom in life, we have to be willing to part with those things that are holding us back. In other words, we have to move out of our comfort zones–and I’m not saying this is easy to do–but it’s absolutely necessary if we are to grow. We have to push through the pain of growth, because on the other side of the pain, we will find freedom.

The same is no less true of conquering the worry habit. You have to want to conquer worry before you can conquer it.

Okay. Let’s assume that you truly want to conquer worry. What then? Well, the next step is to make a decision to conquer worry. You can have all the desire in the world to conquer worry, but unless you decide to do something about it, nothing will happen.

Let me give you a simple illustration. Most of us at some point in our lives have struggled with losing weight. For instance, after I had my second child, I weighed ten pounds more than I weighed before I became pregnant. For years, I kept saying, “I want to lose these ten pounds. I have to lose these ten pounds.” I kept expressing the desire to lose those ten pounds, but I never made the decision to lose them. Consequently, those ten pounds stayed around right where I didn’t want them. Every time I looked in the mirror, there they were, mockingly reminding me of their presence.

Would you believe this went on until my daughter was eighteen years old! Finally, at the end of those eighteen years, I said to myself not only that I wanted to lose those ten pounds, but also that I would lose them without fail. And surely enough, I lost those ten pounds. What made the difference? The difference was my quality decision to lose weight.

A man I highly respect once said that a quality decision is a decision from which there is absolutely no retreat. In other words, I decided to lose those ten pounds, and there was no turning back from my decision.

Conquering the worry habit–or any habit, for that matter–requires the same kind of unflinching determination. Without that kind of determination, you will cave in when the going gets tough.The good news, however, is that once you’ve made the decision to conquer worry, you have won half the battle.

The next thing you need to do is to recognize that worry is a learned habit. No one is born into this world a worrier. So, since you once learned the worry habit, you can unlearn it.

“Worry is a learned habit.”

When endeavoring to unlearn a bad habit, it also helps to determine the root cause of it. So let’s explore the root cause of worry. In this world, there are  two basic forces at work: the life force of God, called “Faith” and the death force of Satan, called “Fear.” Worry is really a form of fear and, therefore, comes from Satan. It is not God’s will that you worry. God makes this very clear in the Bible, the operating manual He provided for us when He created us.

For instance, in John chapter 14, verse 27, God says, “Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.” Elsewhere, in Matthew 6, verse 34, He says, “Therefore, do not worry about tomorrow.” These two statements are not suggestions; they are commands. And God’s commands are not to be taken lightly. To do so results in bad things happening.

Since God commands us not to worry, this means that we have the ability not to worry. You see, God never commands us to do something we are incapable of doing. If He did, He would be unjust, and God is not unjust. He is perfectly just.

Moreover, if we disobey God’s command not to worry, we become guilty of sin. Yes, worrying is a sin!

Now, before you get totally down on yourself, let me encourage you. Maybe you feel that no matter how hard you try, you just can’t stop worrying. You wish you could, but worry has a grip on you that you cannot seem to shake. What can you do?

Here are five steps that have helped me when I have been tempted to worry:

Step #1: Decide and determine that you are going to obey God’s command not to worry, no matter what the cost. Do you know that you can choose not to worry. Yes, you heard me right. You can choose not to worry. Sure, you may be thinking, that may be easy for you to say, but you don’t understand my situation. I just lost my job, and I have five mouths to feed. How can I not worry? Or, my husband just walked out on me and left me with two kids, and you expect me not to worry?

Let me say right upfront that I certainly empathize with you. I know what it feels like to face a seemingly impossible situation and be attacked with worry. I’ve been there, and it’s not a pleasant place to be. But I also know from personal experience that we can choose not to worry. You see, God created us with a free will. Our will is that part of us that makes decisions. With our will, we can decide not to worry, no matter how we feel. And this brings me to my next step for conquering worry.

Step #2: Do not give in to feelings of worry. Resist them! To give in to feelings of worry is to feed those feelings. To resist feelings of worry is to starve them. Worry is like a raging forest fire. The longer you let it go unchecked, the fiercer it grows. By the same token, when you resist feelings of worry, it’s like putting water on that fire. If you keep resisting feelings of worry, you will find that, eventually, the feelings of worry will be quenched.

Step #3: Realize that worry is a malfunction of the imagination. At any given moment, our imaginations are being controlled either by faith or by fear. When we worry, we allow fear to have the upper hand. This is the reason God instructs us to keep our minds filled with thoughts that build and inspire faith. In Philippians chapter 4, verse 8, He says, “Fix your thoughts on what is true and good and right. Think about things that are pure and lovely, and dwell on the fine, good things in others. Think about all you can praise God for and be glad about. And the God of peace will be with you.” Here, God is telling us that when we think good and right thoughts, we will experience His peace. And God’s peace includes the absence of worry.

Well, what are good and right thoughts? They are thoughts of hope, not thoughts of dread. Thoughts of faith, not thoughts of fear. Thoughts of trust in God’s protection, not thoughts of doubt about His protection. In short, good and right thoughts are those thoughts that line up with the Word of God. You see, what we think about affects our feelings. If you constantly think that the worst is about to happen, you will constantly worry. If, on the other hand, you continually think pleasant thoughts, you will continually be at peace.

Step #4: Realize that worry is not a sign of responsible behavior. Many people believe that if they do not worry, they are not acting responsibly. On the contrary, to worry is to act irresponsibly, for when we worry, we cannot think straight. Worry clouds logical thinking and results in poor decisions. 

Step #5: Understand that you will never completely conquer worry in your own strength. You need God’s help. Happily, that help is always available. God tells us in Psalm 46, verses 1 and 2, that He is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble. Therefore, we will not fear. God is eager to help you conquer worry completely. In fact, He has already made a way for you to do so. That way is His Son Jesus Christ. Only by receiving Christ into your life will you completely conquer worry and every other sin in your life. For when you receive Jesus Christ, you receive His power to overcome. And you receive the total restoration of your relationship with God the Father.

You see, Christianity is not a religion. It’s a personal relationship with God the Father through His Son Jesus Christ. Only through Jesus Christ can we have this relationship, for Jesus Himself said, “I am the Way and the Truth and the Life. No one comes to the Father except through Me” (John chapter 14, verse 6). 

So, if you’re tired of allowing worry to dominate your life–in fact, if you’re tired of allowing any other problem to dominate your life–turn to Jesus Christ today. He alone can set you free. And not only is He able to set you free, He is willing and eager to set you free. In no other name than the Name of Jesus Christ is there power to deliver you from bondage. 

Perhaps you want to be free of alcoholism or drug addiction, or smoking, or a bad temper, or an addiction to pornography–whatever it is–Jesus Christ and only Jesus Christ can set you free. Ask Him to do so right now. He has been patiently waiting for you to ask Him for His help. For some of you, He’s been waiting a very long time. Don’t let Him wait a moment longer. And don’t allow yourself to remain in bondage a moment longer. Join me now by repeating this simple prayer after me:

Lord Jesus, I come to You just as I am. I admit that I am a sinner in need of Your mercy and grace. I believe that You are the Son of God, that You died for me, and that You rose again on the third day. I invite You now to come into my life. I receive You as my personal Savior and as the Lord of my life. Make of me all that You created me to be. Amen.

If you sincerely prayed this prayer, you are now a born-again Christ-Follower. I invite you to write to me at drmaryann@maryanndiorio.com. I would like to send you a little booklet that will help you get started in your Christian life.  Also, I invite you to pray for Holy Spirit to lead you to the church of His choice for you, the place where you can serve God with your gifts and where you can be fed on His Word so that you may grow and become more and more like Jesus. 

Finally, I invite you to visit my website at www.maryanndiorio.com

If you are in need of physical healing or prayer for any other need, please write to me as well and I will be happy to pray for you. 

A wise person once said that “worrying does not empty tomorrow of its troubles; it empties today of its strength.” Don’t let worry empty your today of its strength. Instead, replace worry with trust in God. When you do, not only will all your todays be filled with peace, but so will all your tomorrows. Until next time, remember that God loves you just as you are and just where you are, and He will help you to keep on winning with the Word!

Now, it’s YOUR turn: What about you? Do you struggle with worry? What has helped you to overcome worry? Please share your comments in the Comments Box below. Thank you!

TWEETABLE:  “YOU CAN CONQUER WORRY!” by Dr. MaryAnn Diorio @DrMaryAnnDiorio (Click to Tweet)

 

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If you found this post helpful, please forward it to a friend. Thank you! You may also be interested in reading the following popular posts:

Living in a Violent World”

“How to Handle Offense”

Is the Apocalypse Near?” 

“Convergence: Clear Sign of the End Times”

“The Rise of Wicca, Witches, and Warlocks” 

Please check our archives in the right sidebar for older posts on a variety of topics. You may also search for a particular topic in the search box at the top right. 

For additional encouragement, check out my podcasts at the following links:

A Moment with MaryAnn – Podcasts on Living the Good Life

Winning with the Word Podcast Series

Write Your Heart Out! – Podcasts for Writers

Please tell your family and friends about this blog and my other resources, and please pass this post on to them. Thank you!

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Copyright 20111-2019 by Dr. MaryAnn Diorio. All Rights Reserved. This article may not be published or printed in any form whatsoever without the written permission of Dr. MaryAnn Diorio. You may contact her at info@maryanndiorio.com to request permission.

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ARE YOU ON THE VERGE OF GIVING UP?

by Dr. MaryAnn Diorio

“Guard your heart above all else, for it determines 
the course of your life.” ~ Proverbs 4:23

“Matters of the Heart” is a weekly blog that deals with the deepest issues of the human heart, the issues we all face but sometimes don’t want to talk about. The heart is the programming center of our lives. What is programmed into our heart will affect every area of our lives. Learn how to examine your heart and how to program your heart for success.

AN INVITATION TO YOU: To follow this blog, click here 

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Friends have been writing to me with the same recurring theme:  “No sooner do I get hit with one demonic attack than another one follows close on its heels. I get knocked down, barely get up, and am knocked down again!”

Does this sound like you? Are you growing weary with the fight and ready to give up?

If so, then read on.

Jesus warned us that trouble would increase as His return approaches. You see, Satan knows he doesn’t have much time left to do his dirty work, so he has grown vicious with anger and has intensified his efforts to destroy Christ-Followers (Revelation 12: 17). He has also loosed full-blown deception on the world-at-large to keep people from knowing truth and coming to a saving knowledge of Christ. 

So, don’t be discouraged. And whatever you do, DON’T QUIT!

Listen to what our LORD Himself said: “Here on earth you will have many trials and sorrows. But take heart, because I have overcome the world” (John 16: 33 NLT).

One reason you may be feeling discouraged is that you are relying on your own strength to get you through. This is a big mistake. Our strength will never get us through anything. It is only the strength of Christ in us that will get us through.

When we rely on Christ’s strength within us, we enter a state of rest. Rest is that place where we let go and let God.

So, whatever you are facing today, let Jesus handle it for you. Give it over to Him and trust that He will get you through. Determine to keep running your race and to finish strong.

Finally, don’t give up; look up! Our Lord is coming soon to deliver us from this cesspool of corruption called the world. So, rejoice! Our deliverance is near!  Oh, so very near!

My Prayer for You Today: Lord Jesus, I ask that You would encourage my brother and sister today with the encouragement that only You can give. Help them to focus on You and to rest in You. In Your precious Name I pray. So be it!

Now, it’s YOUR turn: How do you encourage yourself in the Lord? Please share your insights in the Comments box below. Thank you!

TWEETABLE:  “ARE YOU ON THE VERGE OF GIVING UP?” by Dr. MaryAnn Diorio @DrMaryAnnDiorio (CLICK TO TWEET).

To be sure you don’t miss any of my future blog posts, you may wish to subscribe to Matters of the Heart. CLICK HERE 

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If you found this post helpful, please forward it to a friend. Thank you! You may also be interested in reading the following popular posts:

“How to Stay Sane in an Insane World”

“Is Regret Stealing Your Joy?”

“How to Recognize a Controlling Spirit”

“Sex and Soul Ties”

Please check our archives in the right sidebar for older posts on a variety of topics. You may also search for a particular topic in the search box at the top right. 

For additional encouragement, check out my podcasts at the following links:

A Moment with MaryAnn – Podcasts on Living the Good Life

Winning with the Word Podcast Series

Write Your Heart Out! – Podcasts for Writers

Please tell your family and friends about this blog and my other resources, and please pass this post on to them. Thank you!

___________________________________________

Copyright 2018 by Dr. MaryAnn Diorio. All Rights Reserved. This article may not be published or printed in any form whatsoever without the written permission of Dr. MaryAnn Diorio. You may contact her at info@maryanndiorio.com to request permission.

Amazon.com Required Disclosure: MaryAnn Diorio is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com.

Disclaimer: This site uses cookies. Your continued use of this site constitutes your consent to our use of cookies.