Thursday, October 18, 2007
Be Anxious for Nothing
This morning I had a change of plans. I had a different post in mind. Something my mom and I discussed. But then I realized that I wasn't prepared to post it yet. After this realization, I wondered what I was going to say. I thought that maybe I would post later in the day. Or maybe just once, not post anything at all. But, then I read two blogs this morning that changed my mind.
One of my favorite scripture passages is from Phillipians. It reminds me that I'm not in control. God has control of my life. Or He should anyway. I sometimes fail to remember that. As many of you know, I worry about everything. I worry about my family, our finances, our business, the war, violence in the schools and on the streets, that the family values of yesterday are gone for good. My husband says he never has to worry because I worry enough for the both of us. But, I started reading the bible. Phillipians 4:6-7 says "Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus."
WHOA! That passage doesn't instruct you to cut out some worry from your life. Or tell you that ok, the big things you can worry about but that's it. It's not telling you 'don't sweat the small stuff.' It clearly instructs you not to worry about ANYTHING. And having worried about everything for so long, I didn't think that I could do it. Now let me clarify one thing before I go on, I do slip up! I admit that there are times when worry sets in. But, something in me clicks. And I am reminded of that passage. And the burden is lifted.
How often do you worry? At a certain low point in my life, I poured through the bible for answers. I prayed that God would hear my prayers and hopefully the answer I was seeking was in His plan and according to His will. And to His glory, my prayers were answered. Not exactly as I wanted but He gave to me the discernment to realize that His plan was better. Then Holly's nephew was in that terrible accident. And something she said will live in my heart forever. She said Julie, pray for him. Your faith gets you everything. Surely He'll hear your prayer.
I said Jo (that's her middle name and I always call her that) He'll hear your prayer too, you know. She said oh I know. But show me where to look in the bible. You're always reading it. Help me pray. And Phillipians was the first book I turned to. I showed her where God instructs us to give all of our burdens to Him. Of course I wasn't disregarding the seriousness of his injuries. But, I knew that no matter how much I worried, Donnie's life was in the hands of God. So, I broke it down for her. Ok, we're not going to worry about this. We're going to praise God and thank Him for sparing his life. We're going to ask God to continue to heal Donnie. To restore his health as it was before the accident. We're asking for no long-term effects. And we're going to pray that God gives us peace in understanding and accepting what happened. So that in the end, no matter what happens, we may glorify God.
And the strangest thing happened. In explaining it to her, I learned the lesson I was trying to teach. The bible tells us God knows the plans He has for us. Let's face it; He's not up there winging it. He already knows the paths we will walk. The only thing we can do is pray that as we walk, we walk with the Lord. Psalm 143:10 says "Teach me to do Your will, for You are my God. May Your kind spirit lead me on level ground." And if you are doing the will of God, how can you worry? It's all relative, you know.
So give your burdens to God. Having given those burdens to Him, what do you have left to worry about? Nothing. It doesn't happen over night. But, the longer you pray, the easier it gets; relinquishing control to God. You know Charles Stanley once said that people are always praying 'what am I going to do, Lord?' He said we have it all wrong. We should be praying 'What are You going to do, Lord?' So God put upon my heart this morning to talk about that passage. Maybe someone who reads my blog is worrying about something. Maybe I could help them. And in helping them, I in turn, get to glorify God. Worry about nothing, my sweet friends. God has it all worked out!