I never worried much as a young person. I considered myself an eternal optimist and found even realistic people to be gloomy and ‘negative’. However, as I’ve gotten older I’ve noticed that I’m no longer so quick to think positively.
I’m not sure if it’s becoming a mother that has made me more prone to worry or just age, but I can be found worrying about one thing or another more often these days.
The Bible says,
Do not fret or have any anxiety about anything, but in every circumstance and in everything, by prayer and petition ([b]definite requests), with thanksgiving, continue to make your wants known to God.
7 And God’s peace [shall be yours, that [c]tranquil state of a soul assured of its salvation through Christ, and so fearing nothing from God and being content with its earthly lot of whatever sort that is, that peace] which transcends all understanding shall [d]garrison and mount guard over your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus. Philippians 4:6,7
One definition of fret is to gradually wear away (something) by rubbing or gnawing. It seems to me that the enemy uses worry-constant negative thoughts about whatever-to slowly gnaw away at our peace, our trust in God. He knows that if He can get us to worry, He can then plant seeds of doubt which ultimately rob of us our faith. It’s faith that pleases God, it’s faith that was counted to Abraham as righteousness. It’s our faith that God uses as a vehicle to get our blessings to our door.
The scripture says that we should pray about everything. Not some things, or only spiritual things. God is concerned about every area of our lives. In fact I think it increases our intimacy with Him when we get in the practice of bringing the smallest and the biggest (and everything in between) things to Him. I think it shows Him that we trust His sovereignty and are resting in His love and care for us. I Peter 5:7 MSG version says that God is “most careful with us.” This makes me think of how careful, gentle, and attentive a mother is to her newborn baby. The mother’s ears are attuned to any little sound the baby makes. Even a hint of a cry sends the mother running to the baby’s side.
God wants our requests. He wants to hear from us. But we must almost be careful to pray in faith and with thanksgiving. We must come before His presence with singing in worship and praise. We can thank Him in advance for and answering our request or simply thank Him for who He is. The commentary I read said that this prevents us from going to God whining and complaining.
Once we’ve come to God, we can walk away with peace that we can’t explain. Peace is a weapon of our warfare. The enemy wants us to worry, fret, have anxiety, be full of strife and doubt so that we can be defeated. He wants our eyes on our problem instead of on God. But once we heed v. 6 we can expect to receive the peace of God. This peace of a soul assured of God’s love and mercy is perpetually unbothered by circumstances. Notice from the amplified version that the peace isn’t from assurance that everything will work out the way we want it, but it comes from knowing that we are saved and therefore have nothing to fear and can be content.
I think the more focus we have or the more we idolize temporal things (including our jobs, marriages, or bank accounts) the more prone we are to worry. But if our focus is on Jesus then there’s much more room for consistent joy because He has not and will not change. He’s the same yesterday, today and forever more.
Dear Lord Jesus,
Thank you for being good and rich in mercy. Thank you for your grace. Lord please forgive me for worrying and not trusting in you completely. I pray that I will truly be anxious for nothing and find my contentment in you and your consistency. Please help me to keep my eyes on you and your goodness. Please let the joy of the Lord be my strength.
In Jesus Name,
PS If you don’t know Jesus as your personal savior He longs to come into your heart and have a personal relationship with you. Romans 10:9 says,
If you openly declare that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. NLT
Pray this prayer:
Lord Jesus, I come to you humbly asking you to forgive my sins. I believe that you died and rose again three days later to pay for my sins. Thank you for dying for me. Please Lord, come into my heart. I give control of my life over to you. Please God, from this moment forward help me to live for you and do your will. Thank you Lord, that now I am saved. I no longer have to fear death. Please help me be all you made me to be.
In Jesus name,