It’s so easy to worry about any and everything. In fact the devil does his best to get us to do just that. From finances, to relationships, to our kids, to our health, there is plenty to worry, stress over and be anxious about it. In fact things can be going great in your life and yet and still, thoughts of worry can creep up into your mind.
God has been teaching me so much lately and I am happy to say that I have grown to a point that not much really worries me. Thanks and praise go to God, His Word and the Holy Spirit, for teaching me how to pray and not worry. I know for a fact that it was nothing that I did on my own or taught myself to do.
Lately, however, I feel like Satan has become fixated on this area of my life, because he knows that God is strengthening me in regards to prayer. Just when I think I’ve mastered it, and I’ve let my everyday problems, circumstances and issues that arise just roll off my back while I continue to give it all to God, all of a sudden, the devil tries a new tactic – getting me to worry about the future and stuff that could happen. Just these last two weeks, I’ve been plagued with thoughts out of the blue like:
‘when are you going to finally get a new car? you know its going to break down for real next time’
‘you don’t want your son going to public school for middle school do you? that’s when they change for the worse’
‘how are you going to afford to send him to college when he turns 18?’
‘more and more family members are being diagnosed with cancer, what if you’re next’
‘what if your job starts laying off people, you haven’t even begun to rebuild your savings back up’
‘what if you die tomorrow? did you revise your will? is your life insurance current?’
‘what if something bad happens to mom/dad, how are you going to take care of them?’
At first I thought it was because it was that time of the month, since I tend to get more sensitive and emotional during those times. But after these thoughts continued for a week, effecting my mood, my conversation, and my day to day responsibilities, I realized what the enemy was trying to do. I was upset at myself for letting it go that long. Then I did what I already knew to do, but had momentarily forgotten, as we Christians sometimes do. I went to God in prayer and picked up His Word. Yes, its that simple!
Matthew 6:25-34 (TLB):
So my counsel is: Don’t worry about things—food, drink, and clothes. For you already have life and a body—and they are far more important than what to eat and wear. Look at the birds! They don’t worry about what to eat—they don’t need to sow or reap or store up food—for your heavenly Father feeds them. And you are far more valuable to him than they are. Will all your worries add a single moment to your life?
And why worry about your clothes? Look at the field lilies! They don’t worry about theirs. Yet King Solomon in all his glory was not clothed as beautifully as they. And if God cares so wonderfully for flowers that are here today and gone tomorrow, won’t he more surely care for you, O men of little faith? So don’t worry at all about having enough food and clothing. Why be like the heathen? For they take pride in all these things and are deeply concerned about them. But your heavenly Father already knows perfectly well that you need them, and he will give them to you if you give him first place in your life and live as he wants you to.
So don’t be anxious about tomorrow. God will take care of your tomorrow too. Live one day at a time.
What a refresher! And boy did I need that exact passage! Now granted, it’s not that we don’t need to be concerned about most of the things that creep up in our minds (such as those I listed). We all know life is a challenge and everyday presents its own version of that challenge. However, the beauty of having a relationship with God is that we don’t have to live life like those who don’t have a relationship with Him. He has given us direct access to Him and we can go to Him in prayer anytime. He has also given us access to His Word so that He can speak to us anytime. When we utilize these two things together, there is nothing we can’t handle.
So what it comes down to is this: Life is hard and will continue to be hard! But in the midst of this life, we have a choice to make each day – we can take our concerns and turn them into worries (which will lead to stress, anxiety, anger, and “coping” mechanisms that lead to other issues) or we can take our concerns to God in prayer and leave them with Him. After all, its not like we can solve them on our own anyway.
Remember, as I had to learn, this is a “daily” choice that we have to make. The best way to prepare is to start praying now – “Lord help me to develop the knee-jerk reaction of prayer, so that anytime I face a situation that causes me to worry, doubt, or get frustrated, that I will call on you first and foremost.”
Note: this will NOT melt your problems or worries away! However, this will change how you face your problems, and help you to worry less and less as you continue to pray and seek His Word. Ultimately – it will change your life as it changes your outlook on your life and begins to change you – guaranteed – according to the mirror of God’s Word!