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June Maffin Art Blog

The Worry box

by junemaffin , September 15, 2008—12:00 AM

Topics: art


Worry __" worry. Some people are really worry-warts. They worry about the weather. They worry about exams. They worry about finances. They worry about grades. They worry about health. They worry whether their art is 'good enough.' They worry about ___ worrying!

J. Arthur Rank, the movie mogul, was a worrier. One day, he had an idea. He decided to do all his worrying on the same day each week. When anything happened that gave him anxiety, he wrote it down and put it in his Worry Box. Each Wednesday, he opened the Worry Box and found that most of the things that had worried him the other six days, were already settled and it would have been useless to worry about them.

He discovered what statisticians have learned --- that most people worry about things that never happen __" or that can't be changed 40% - worry about the things that never happen 30% - worry about the things can't be changed 12% - worry about needless health concerns 10% - worry about petty, miscellaneous concerns only 8% - worry about real, legitimate concerns & genuine health issues

Worry has been proven to be harmful __" spiritually, emotionally, mentally, physically. Some turn their fears and concerns to a Higher Power, but not everyone because many think their problems are so huge that they want to still have some control over them. And when they hang on to their problems, they worry! We can all think of a hundred scenarios where worry and anxiety seem perfectly in order. Or, is it?

When I lived on the Sunshine Coast, I had a little home snuggled into a rocky hill on almost an acre of wooded area. I soon discovered lots of carpenter ants who just loved my home. I quickly found an exterminator who drilled holes inside my walls, promising that my problem would soon come to an end. "It may take a few days for the ants to disappear. It may seem for a time that you even have more of them. It takes a while for the product to take effect. But, it will work." And, you know what? Within a week, the carpenter ant infestation was gone and though I did see an occasional ant, I trusted the exterminator and believed that he knew what he was doing.

A widow had reared six biological and twelve adopted children. In spite of her busy, hectic and troubled life, she was noted for her calm and peaceful manner. The reporter asked her "How, amidst all the poverty, work, sickness and responsibility, have you managed to have such a confident spirit?" She replied "One day, a long time ago, I said to God ... 'I'll do the work. You do the worrying.' I haven't had a worry since." I like that. Let God/Higher Power/the Creator do the worrying. Why would I trust an exterminator more than I would God?

Nine year old Travis had been badly burned in a housefire. He had a lot of time to think and wonder about his situation. One day, after enduring another painful series of exams and therapies, he asked his mom "Do you really think God is here?" His mother replied "Of course. It's God who helps the nurses turn you and it's God who created the medicines and this hospital and the doctors who are working to get you better." Later that day, a stranger passed by Travis room. Seeing him all puffed up with the burns on his face and covered with layers of sterile gauze, the stranger said "Why does God punish a child like this?" Travis shouted back __" "Don't say that. Don't say anything bad about God. When it hurts, God cries with me."

Travis was right. When the World Trade Towers imploded, when disasters hit, when cancer robs us of loved ones, when we see injustices around us, when children are kidnapped, women abused, elderly people living on fixed incomes are unable to afford nutritional food or housing, we are not alone. The Holy One/God is with us, giving us courage to get through the devastation, the grief, the sadness, the anger ___ the worry.

Maybe we should all be like that creature on the Mad Magazine who said: "What? Me Worry?" Maybe we should make a Worry Box and see if the things we put into it each day for six days, are still of such urgent concern on the seventh day when we open the Worry Box. And if we do, we'll discover that most of them won't be!



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