“Worry, worry, worry. I think I’m worried about all that I’m worried about.” Worry and anxiety can be overwhelming if we allow it. Thankfully, God has given us His words of comfort about His character and very practical ways in the Scriptures to live by faith rather than fear.
For example, let’s read Matthew 6:25-34, and learn what Jesus Christ has to say about worry:
“Therefore I tell you, do not be anxious about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink, nor about your body, what you will put on. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothing? 26 Look at the birds of the air: they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they? 27 And which of you by being anxious can add a single hour to his span of life? 28 And why are you anxious about clothing? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow: they neither toil nor spin, 29 yet I tell you, even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these. 30 But if God so clothes the grass of the field, which today is alive and tomorrow is thrown into the oven, will he not much more clothe you, O you of little faith? 31 Therefore do not be anxious, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ 32 For the Gentiles seek after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them all. 33 But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you. 34 “Therefore do not be anxious about tomorrow, for tomorrow will be anxious for itself. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble.
There is so much here. The big ideas are simply that we can expend energy and emotion toward the wrong day: tomorrow – when today has enough requirements to tend to. As believers, we trust in the provision of God because of His incredible character and trust that whatever trials we face are ordained by His sovereignty for our good and His glory. We are commanded to seek first His kingdom and doing what is right more than anything else. That gives us purpose and focus to expend upon the correct day: today (not the past or tomorrow).
It’s not a call to not plan or to be irresponsible. Instead, it’s a call to focus upon “one day at a time” as many like to say.
Then, in 1 Peter 5:6-7, the Word has some things to say on the topic of worry and anxiety:
Humble yourselves, therefore, under the mighty hand of God so that at the proper time he may exalt you, 7 casting all your anxieties on him, because he cares for you.
In this passage, we have 2 responsibilities:
- Be humble. Humbling ourselves is commanded and necessary because of our sin nature and propensity to be proud of ourselves, forgetting to acknowledge the very Creator God who gives us breath, gifts, abilities, time, and energy. We are dependent creatures upon Him and anything we do is simply because He has given us the ability to do it.
- Cast your cares on Him. Why? Because He cares for you. Remember that every time you pray to God He hears you and He cares about you. Even in our deepest, darkest moment of sin and despair, when we feel like giving up and giving into our desires, He still loves us. It is the love of God that compels us to continue fighting the good fight day by day. God’s love is our motivation and His love casts out fear (I John 4:18).
Here is one more evidence of God’s amazing love to us: Romans 5:8 says, “but God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.” Pastor Brad Bigney recently preached on Sunday, September 20, 2015, and said, “Don’t call yourself a Christian unless you first call yourself a sinner.” He’s right. Jesus came to die for sinners and because of His great love for sinners, we have nothing to fear. Nor should we worry.
There are several great books and booklets on the topic of fear, worry, anxiety, and humility that address the sin issue of the heart and how to overcome life-dominating sins like these. Dr. Stuart Scott wrote a booklet called, Anger, Anxiety and Fear. It can be found at Focus Publishing’s website here and is only $5.00.
Scott also wrote a book on the topic of humility. It’s called From Pride to Humility, and can be purchased here. It’s also $5.00.
Elyse Fitzpatrick has a book called Fear, Worry, and Anxiety that is excellent, also.
We highly recommend purchasing these resources for help with how to deal with worry. It’s worth every penny, in that you would be purchasing biblical materials to help you deal with the issues and struggles you may face. To tell you the truth, we all struggle with some kind of sin issue, whether we like it or not, whether we deal with it biblically or not. We all have worried indicating our lack of faith in the love and character of God. Romans 3:23 says, “ for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God” and the good news is that Jesus Christ came to die for all sinners. Repent and trust in Him today by grace!
-Mark and Rachel Shaw (knowing the Word of God provides reminders of God’s love when our circumstances don’t look as promising as we’d like)