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I don’t have to tell you that because of COVID-19, our world has changed dramatically. Thanks to the vaccines, we’re beginning to get out into this new world to discover what comes next. And it’s a little scary. 

As a matter of fact, doctors have found that one-third of teens ages 13 to 18 have an anxiety disorder. Doctors also found that a lot of these teens started feeling anxiety at a younger age, usually around 11 years old and some as young as seven years old.

In our attempt to re-enter a more normal existence we shouldn’t forget that we’re not the only ones who are feeling intimidated and nervous; our children are experiencing anxiety too, and we need to provide them with reliable, accessible guidance for stressful days

Worry is something we and our children can overcome. The Bible offers us this guidance and we can help our pre-teens process their worries by pointing them to God’s faithfulness. 

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The apostle Paul knew this. In his letter to the Philippians, Paul wanted his friends to know they didn’t have to worry about their lives because God was taking care of them. Here’s what he says in Philippians 4:4-9:

Be full of joy in the Lord always. I will say again, be full of joy.

Let everyone see that you are gentle and kind. The Lord is coming soon. Do not worry about anything, but pray and ask God for everything you need, always giving thanks. 

And God’s peace, which is so great we cannot understand it, will keep your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus.

Brothers and sisters, think about the things that are good and worthy of praise. Think about the things that are true and honorable and right and pure and beautiful and respected. Do what you learned and received from me, what I told you, and what you saw me do. And the God who gives peace will be with you.

Pastor and best-selling author Max Lucado shares COVID-19 advice Video

In “Anxious for Nothing (Young Readers Edition),” you and your children will discover how to overcome anxiety and embrace God’s lasting peace by practicing four things Paul tells us to do in this Scripture. 

There is nothing wrong with being prepared for tomorrow. Nor is it wrong to have a healthy concern for tomorrow. But worrying goes beyond preparation and healthy concern.

I like using the acronym C-A-L-M to help me remember his instructions. 

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C – Celebrate God and His Goodness. In verse 4, Paul says “Be full of joy in the Lord always.” When we remember who God is and what He has done, we can feel full of joy in a way that makes us want to celebrate Him through our worship.

A – Ask God for Help. In verse 6, Paul says, “Pray and ask God for everything you need.” When we pray and ask God for help, we let God take our worries from us. We don’t have to carry them ourselves.

More from Opinion Max Lucado: Got worries about COVID, a job, food, family? Give your fears to the FatherChristen Limbaugh Bloom: Keep praying, hoping – God’s not giving up on you so don’t give up on himJoshua Rogers: I complained about a cashier — and I won’t forget her boss’s response

L- Look on the bright side. Verse 6 also contains the phrase, “Always giving thanks.” Remembering to thank God for the good things in our lives helps us see our situations with more positivity.

M – Meditate on good things. In verse 8, Paul says, “Think about the things that are good and worthy of praise. Think about the things that are true and honorable and right and pure and beautiful and respected.” When we meditate on good things, our brains and hearts feel more peaceful.

When fears about the future creep into your mind or your child’s mind, remind yourself and your loved ones to be full of joy knowing that God is good and God is in control. Remember what God has already done for you and celebrate that He is able to do what you cannot do.

There is nothing wrong with being prepared for tomorrow. Nor is it wrong to have a healthy concern for tomorrow. But worrying goes beyond preparation and healthy concern. 

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When we focus on our blessings, no matter how hard life is, our attitude toward life gets brighter. Take a second to count your blessings right now. Think about what you are thankful for. Your family? Friends? A good breakfast? 

Your blessings can be big or small. All of it counts as gratitude. And those reminders of His faithfulness help keep your worries in check. By discovering God’s tools for dealing with anxiety, you and your children will increase the odds of a happy and joy-filled life. 

Andrea Lucado, Max Lucado’s daughter, is a freelance writer based in Austin, Texas. She cowrote Anxious for Nothing Young Readers Edition and is the author of “English Lessons: The Crooked Path of Growing Toward Faith.” More more visit  www.AndreaLucado.com

Source Link:
https://www.foxnews.com/opinion/covid-worries-4-practices-pre-teen-anxiety-max-lucado-andrea-lucado

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