Tuesday, November 3, 2015

Creating a {Do Not} Worry Book for Children and Adults

The outward appearances are different but the internal feelings are the same.  Fear.  Anxiety.  Worry. 

For Bubs, it manifests itself in him tensing his body and opening his eyes very wide.  In Peanut and my niece, their fingers go to the mouth.  For me, worry results in tense muscles and a pounding headache.  All signs of worry about a present or future event. 

But I am reminded that worry is not a Fruit of the Spirit.  Actually God is pretty clear in the Bible that we are not to worry (Matthew 6:25-34). 
Do not be anxious [worry] about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.  Philippians 4:6
Two verses later Paul tells us what to do instead.
Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things.
We must learn to place our worry into the hands of the Creator and then replace it with truth. 

Using a {Do Not} Worry Book is just one way that I have found to help refocus.

Creating a Younger Child's {Do Not}Worry Notebook

Below is a Worry Notebook which I created for my niece, who is five. 


 5.5 x 8.5 Inch Binder - I like this size because it is easy to for a child to handle.  Use one with a clear cover pocket to create a pretty cover.
5.5 x 8.5 Sheet Protectors - Because of her age, I placed each piece of paper in a page protector.


Pink is my niece's favorite color so I chose pink paper and cut it in half to fit into the page protectors.   A paper trimmer makes this process very quick.

Next I wrote on the back of several pages, "I worry about..." and outlined a box for her to draw a picture of God helping her with the specific worry.  I included a verse reflecting God's help at the top of the box. 

Her worry topics are:
 - Messing Up (making mistakes)
 - Bugs
 - Storms
 - Meeting New People
 - Being Hurt

On the front of each paper (except one), I wrote "When I get worried about...., I will..." and drew a box. 

Next I added little stickers to each page.  Since I knew the areas of worry which she struggled, I was able to match the stickers to the focus of each page. 

After presenting the book to her, she was excited to get started.  She chose to write on messing up or making wrong choices.  She drew a picture of God helping her when she reads her Bible.  Then together we created a list on the next page of what she can do when she gets worried about making a mistake. Then we placed the pages in the protectors.

After the worry pages, I included a list of scripture memory about worrying.  

Possible verses could be:
 - Zepheniah 3:17
 - I Peter 5:7
 - Matthew 6:33
 - Philippians 4:6
 - Colossians 3:2
 - Deuteronomy 31:6 
 - Hebrews 13:5
 - John 14:1
 - Jeremiah 29:11
 - Isaiah 26:3
 - Psalm 56:3-4
 - Romans 8:28
 - Genesis 28:15

Extra pages and protectors were included for she and her mom to add additional areas of worry or verses as they come.

After filling out each page, this book can be kept in a prominent area of her home so that as soon as her parents see the signs of worry, they can instruct her to grab her book.  Then she can find the picture and ideas that she came up with to replace the worry with truth.

Creating an Older Child's {Do Not} Worry Notebook

The second Worry Notebook that I created was for Bubs, who is 11.  Because he is older than my niece and can read, I included him in the setup and strictly wrote verses for him.  



For Bubs' {Do Not} Worry Notebook, he and I began by creating a list of things that he worries about.  Then we combined the list to come up with five or six main sections.

Possible categories:
 - Do it!  
 - God is...
 - Prayer
 - Promises
 - Worry 

From there, we found favorite verses and decided which category the verse went under.

Possible verses (in addition to the verses shared in the first Notebook):
 - I Peter 5:5
 - Proverbs 18:10
 - John 14:6
 - Ephesians 6:2-3
 - Micah 6:8
 - Psalm 139:13-14

We included extra paper and dividers for Bubs to add to the journal as he finds more verses and grows in his maturity and understanding. 

Creating an Adult {Do Not} Worry Notebook

I've been using a Worry Notebook for a few years now.  But instead of calling it a Worry Book I call it my Quiet Time Journal which I share in detail in my free ebook, A Quiet Time, Worth the Time.   If you haven't read how I created and use a Quiet Time Journal, I encourage you to.  You will see how I collect truth from the Scripture, place it in my Quiet Time Journal, lay my worry in God's hands, and then replace my worry with truth.  

Worry doesn't distinguish by age.  But in using the different aspects I've shared in this post, you can create a {Do Not} Worry Notebook for the worriers in your life and create one for yourself too. 

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The Our Out-of-Sync Life blog focuses on encouraging women to deepen their spiritual life, simplify daily tasks, and impress Jesus on the children around them.