In Philippians 4:6, we read, ‘Do not be anxious about anything’. Jesus said, ‘Who of you by worrying can add a single hour to his life? So if you cannot do such a small thing, why do you worry about the rest?’ (Luke 12: 25-26). He also said, ‘Do not worry about tomorrow’ (Matthew 6:34). So why do we worry?
We find it difficult to lay our worries on a shelf and just walk away or turn our back and ignore them. Worry tends to grab us when we’re not expecting it to, and, the more we focus on it, the worse it gets. Worrying is being fearfully uncertain of the future. We can’t tell what the future holds and we often imagine the worst. Worry takes over our thoughts and sometimes we feel a tightening in the pit of our stomach. But Jesus said, quite emphatically, “Don’t do it.” So how can we deal with it?
‘Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, since as members of one body you were called to peace. And be thankful’ (Colossians 3:15). How do we do this? How can we find peace in the midst of doubt? Anxiety invades our mind and the peace of Christ gets crowded out. The first thing we must do is pray. This seems the obvious choice, but often under the stress of the situation we forget. Our mind is so full of uncertainty there’s no room for God.
Does worrying make things better? No. Does it make things worse? Yes. By worrying we take our eyes off Jesus and lose touch with God, and so allow the enemy to invade the situation. If we turn worry on its head, we have faith. The Bible says faith can move mountains (Mark 11:23). Faith in Jesus gives Him the authority to move in our lives. And when He has authority the enemy loses control.
Jesus said, ‘In the world you will have tribulation’ (John 16:33). But in the same breath He also said, ‘In me you have peace.’ Worrying does no good. It only causes heartache. Faith in Jesus can do no harm, but it can release the power of God to move.
Peter stepped out of the boat and walked on the surface of the water. Then he took his eyes off Jesus and began to sink. Jesus reached out to grab him. “You of little faith,” he said, “why did you doubt?” (Matthew 14:31). And the storm subsided.
It’s the same with us. When the storm looms and dark clouds form, we can become overwhelmed, and afraid we might drown. But if we look to the One who can calm the storm, and if we can pass our anxieties on to Him, in faith with thanksgiving, our hearts and minds will be filled with the peace of God and the dark clouds of anxiety will disperse (Philippians 4:6-7). Let’s allow Him to take the strain and carry the burden. He’s stronger than we are.
Prayer: Lord, please forgive me for worrying. I know it’s wrong and sometimes I can’t help it. I want to include You in all areas of my life; the joys and excitement as well as my fears and my doubts. I choose to open my heart to You now, and receive You afresh, that the joy of my Lord is my strength, always. In Jesus’ name. Amen.
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