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Motivational Minute: The Bark is Bigger than the Bite

We all experience events in our lives, both good and bad that can bring about great angst. Whether it’s impending surgery, a career change, the birth of a child, divorce, confrontation with a friend, or a big test, it’s human nature to get worked up and stressed about the trials we face in this life.

For some, the anxiety felt in anticipation of what lies ahead can be debilitating. For example, I have had to undergo surgery (mostly minor and outpatient) a few times in my life and, for me; going through anything medical is a tremendous stress-inducing phenomenon. Though I tend not to be a worrier, when it comes to medical procedures, I will inevitably begin thinking about what’s coming well ahead of time until it becomes the only thing I think about.

The exclusive focus on the upcoming procedure, in turn, makes it difficult to enjoy any activity regardless of how enjoyable that activity may be. In other words, the essence of life is reduced to a single instance in time that hasn’t even happened yet.

God, in His infinite wisdom, understands the capacity we have to needlessly focus on something that is in the future that may or may not turn out as we anticipate. That’s why He tells us… Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus (Philippians 4:6-7).

I am certain that no one has ever changed the outcome of any event by worrying about it. And, in most instances, when the event actually does happen, it turns out that the bark is bigger than the bite. We would be better served to trust the God who’s in control and spend our time being thankful for all the blessings we have rather than stressing over a trial that’s yet to occur.