Serenity Amongst Worries

Embracing serenity
Embracing serenity

Have you ever been so focused on one thing that other things to do are neglected – they slip by unnoticed and undone?  If I get engrossed in a project, meals get skipped, bathroom breaks are forgotten- until it’s almost too late- and muscles become knotted because I forget to let myself stretch.  (Please tell me this isn’t just me!)

Since we moved from big city to small town in March, I’ve mentioned to my husband several times that I need to look for a church here.  I also say that I need to get a drain stopper for my younger son’s sink…I need to fix the window screens with holes in them…I need to work on my novel more.  Our attention has been directed toward getting the yard cleaned up and we’ve made progress…but it means other things are not getting done.  (I’m not Wonder Woman after all…but oh, how fun that would be!)

You might be wondering, “If you want to find a church so badly, how come you don’t get it done?”  Simple answer:  my shyness and social anxiety have been stronger than my desire to find a church.  Since my husband works on Sundays, I wouldn’t have him to lean on.  Yet, I’m not disciplined enough yet to study the Bible regularly on my own, so I really do need the weekly nudge to keep me motivated.  This has been my struggle for the last few months.

As we drove home from watching fireworks on the Fourth of July, I saw a church and commented again, “I really need to look into finding a church here.  I miss it.”

On Saturday, my husband called and told me about an ad on the radio about a generator for sale.  He looked at it and liked it, so I met him at the person’s house, checkbook in hand.  We got to talking to the people and it turns out they are part of the worship band at a nearby Bible church.  (Oh, we’re small town now, so everything is nearby :razz:)

Long story short, I’m going to swallow my nerves (and eat a light breakfast, just in case) and go to the church service today.  Everyone in town has been friendly, so I can only attribute my anxiety to leftover issues from my childhood.  I read through several Bible verses last night to try to calm my increasing worries.  (What if I get lost on the way…I don’t know where to take the kids…what if I run late and can’t find a seat…what if I find a seat, but it’s all the way in front…oh the list went on.)  I liked these two best:

Anxiety weighs down the heart, but a kind word cheers it up.  (Proverbs 12:25)

I sought the Lord, and he answered me; he delivered me from all my fears. (Psalm 34:4)

Today, I pray that God will replace my inner turmoil with serenity and ease my social apprehension so it is not a hindrance in seeking a new church home.  I ask that He banish my superficial worries so that my ears and heart will be open.

Do you have fears/worries that churn inside you?  How do you find peace?


20 thoughts on “Serenity Amongst Worries

  1. melissa kernan July 7, 2013 / 4:16 AM

    i think you’ll be glad you went. every time i ever moved, church was the one place that i felt like i belonged’ right away. it’s always been a place of solace, friendship, and a wonderful, accepting environment for my kids – not to mention endless opportunities for me to stretch my very tentative, very slow-moving wings. good luck – i’ll think of you in my own service today!

    • jannatwrites July 9, 2013 / 10:35 AM

      Thanks for the warm and encouraging comment, Melissa! I enjoyed the service, but the kids stuck with me rather than going to the childrens’ services. We’ll try it a few more times to see how it goes. The people were nice and welcoming, so I do hope things work out there.

  2. Catherine Johnson July 7, 2013 / 4:25 AM

    That’s awesome! I just wish my church was more kid-centric like my friend’s church. My son doesn’t want to go and I don’t blame him. I’ll have to get crative with what he can take with him that’s religious but fun to do. Good luck!

    • jannatwrites July 9, 2013 / 10:38 AM

      The childrens’ programs are so important. Our last church had a great program, so I’m a little spoiled in that respect. Even still, my older son has pushed back on not wanting to go. I might be dreaming, but I’d like to find something engaging enough that they actually look forward to going 🙂 Thanks for stopping by and sharing your thoughts, Catherine!

  3. Lance July 7, 2013 / 5:17 AM

    The first few paragraphs of this? I’m going through this now, with my family.

    The last few paragraphs? That’s what I need to work on.

    Thank you for writing this. I needed to read it today. God Bless you for it.

    • jannatwrites July 9, 2013 / 10:40 AM

      I’m glad this post helped you in some way, Lance. I appreciate you reading and sharing your comment!

  4. nrhatch July 7, 2013 / 10:18 AM

    I hope you find a church that’s a good fit for you, Janna.

    • jannatwrites July 9, 2013 / 10:41 AM

      Me too, Nancy! The one we went to Sunday made a good first impression. It takes me several weeks to decide, though.

  5. diannegray July 7, 2013 / 1:16 PM

    Best of luck with the church, Janna. I’m sure the parishioners will be lovely and welcome you with open arms 😀

    • jannatwrites July 9, 2013 / 10:42 AM

      They were kind to us, Dianne! They are having a family campout next weekend, but we’ll sit that out – too soon for me to jump into that socializing pool 🙂 I’ll tray it out for a few weeks and see what happens.

  6. GodGirl July 7, 2013 / 6:37 PM

    Thanks for your transparency Janna. I can relate to the anxiety for sure. Praying with you that you will know God’s presence as you step out in unfamiliar territory. He is with you and loves you so much!

    • jannatwrites July 9, 2013 / 10:48 AM

      Thanks so much for your prayers, GodGirl! We made it through our fist visit. The kids will try out the childrens program next time. The people we met on Saturday found us pretty quickly and they made us feel welcome.

      • GodGirl July 10, 2013 / 3:24 AM

        That’s great Janna! So glad you made it through and that people were welcoming. All the best for your next visit, and the kids’ program too.

        • jannatwrites July 11, 2013 / 11:48 PM

          Thanks, GodGirl! I hope the boys enjoy their classes.

  7. pattyabr July 7, 2013 / 9:42 PM

    We have visited two different churches the past two weekends. I took the approach that it was an adventure. It did help that I was with my family. Good luck on your search.

    • jannatwrites July 9, 2013 / 10:49 AM

      Thanks, Patty – I hope your search goes well, too. It’s not quite as intimidating with someone with you. The kids wanted to stick with me, so I didn’t push them to go to the kid services. Next time, I think they’ll try it out.

  8. Eric Alagan July 7, 2013 / 11:24 PM

    You’re very open about your fears and anxieties – that makes you a very confident person, I reckon.

    But I’m with you, Janna – leave it to the Lord and He’ll look out for us – just saying this, makes me feel lighter 🙂

    Peace ane blessings my dear,

    • jannatwrites July 9, 2013 / 10:51 AM

      I’ve never thought of myself as confident, Eric. I wrote it because I’d like to think I’m not the only one who struggles with fear and anxiety. If anyone else could relate to my words, then it is a worthwhile post to me. You’re right though- God does look out for us. Thanks for reading, Eric!

  9. Imelda July 9, 2013 / 10:02 PM

    I totally understand you. It is just so hard to walk in a established group and be comfortable.

    I wish you well on your Church hunt. I hope all goes well for you. 🙂 And yeah… one just can’t do everything. Progress in yard work is a major accomplishment in my book. 🙂

    • jannatwrites July 11, 2013 / 11:50 PM

      Thanks for your support, Imelda! Oh, the yard work is never-ending. I think we’ll have to accept it’s a continuous job.

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