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Why we Worry!

Why do you worry? Jesus asked his disciples that question while repeatedly encouraging them not to be consumed by the kind of everyday concerns that bother those who don’t know him and his father.

But was the Teacher asking us to detach ourselves from the real concerns of life?… when he said,

” Therefore I say to you, do not worry 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? Look at the birds of the air, for they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns; yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they? Which of you by worrying can add one cubit to his stature? So why do you worry about clothing? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow: they neither toil nor spin; and yet I say to you that even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these. Now if God so clothes the grass of the field, which today is, and tomorrow is thrown into the oven, will He not much more clothe you, O you of little faith? Therefore do not worry, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear? For after all these things the Gentiles seek. For your heavenly Father knows that you need all these things. But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you. Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about its own things. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble” (Matthew 6:25-31).

On other occasions Jesus showed that his “don’t worry” teaching goes beyond concern for food and clothes. When his disciples experienced alarm in a storm that threatened to sink their ship, he challenged their lack of faith. And when his dear friends Mary and Martha called for his help to save their dying brother, Jesus delayed going to them until after the brother had died– as if to expose their lack of trust.

So what was Jesus saying when he encouraged asked, “Why do you worry”?

Couldn’t we respectfully say, “Lord, we worry because you have made us in your own likeness. As best we can tell, the animals you made don’t worry. Neither do the wildflowers of the field that you used as examples of a worry-free existence.

But we are people. And people worry because you have given us the ability to think about the future and about our own responsibility to use good judgment. You have given us an imagination that enables us to see the good and bad possibilities of life. You have given us the capacity to care about what happens to ourselves and others.

Lord, we worry because we live in a world is terribly broken, in which inexpressibly terrible things happen, and because neither we nor our loved ones are as safe as we long to be.”

Now, don’t get me wrong. I’m not looking to arm wrestle the Lord. I’m pushing back a little because I know there’s a fine line between loving concern, and unhealthy anxiety.  I know that all of us feel concerns of life that, at times, eat us up and test our beliefs with the fire of fear…especially for those we care about.

Let’s talk about why we worry and how we are doing in the process of putting some of those anxieties to rest… without throwing care and caution to the wind…for awhile at least…

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53 Responses to “Why we Worry!”

  1. Jean Blom says:

    Control – I think alot of my worries stem from the desire to control things, outcomes, other people, situations, things like that. Coming from a history of alcoholism in the home, depression in the home, anorexia/bulemia/depression in myself, stress/worry/control and co-dependent. It takes alot of strength and determination to learn to let go, trust God with the outcome, and believe that He will intercede in the things I worry about. But God is Good, as I begin to submit these worries in prayer, learn to let go, lean on not my own understanding, but His perfect will, answers do come, prayers are answered and God in His divine providence, does make His presence known to me and in that, I am beginning to build my faith in releasing worry more and more. Thanks, jb.

  2. saled says:

    After reading The Shack, I realized that I worry because I want the future to be guaranteed, and I’m afraid that I really can’t trust God to bring that future about. I also worry because I have a delusion that I, not God, should be able to control all things that happen to my children. I have to remind them to watch for moose or deer on the roads, I have to carry my cell phone in case they need me, I have to have health insurance that covers them or a hospital may not treat them.

    The situation in the Shack when Mac is rescuing his son from drowning while his little girl is kidnapped woke me up to the fact that I don’t have to try to be God.
    I CAN’T control everything. A “nice” life doesn’t necessarily mean that God has blessed me. Disaster doesn’t mean that God has cursed me.

    Health insurance doesn’t guarantee your health, and today, doesn’t even guarantee you against bankruptcy. My husband and I made job decisions based on health insurance and for 30 years, we barely used it. The jobs that he worked to provide the insurance took his health, and he is presently unable to work. He is covered by the very generous plan I have at work, only 20% deductible. We can forsee a future where neither of us is old enough for medicare, and neither has a job to provide insurance. But I sleep better at night now than I have in years, because I, like Isaiah, know that God is my portion, and I will hope in him.

  3. refump says:

    I am afraid I must admit that I “trust” God more when all the bills are paid & I am not over drawn. This faith obviously is not not real faith & I have been exposed many times as having this false faith & it is always a hard pill to swallow that my faith is so shallow. Winston Churchill once said something to the affect “90 % of the things I worried about never happened”. The verse that helps me when I become overwrought with worry is Philippians 4:6-7 “Don’t fret or worry. Instead of worrying, pray. Let petitions and praises shape your worries into prayers, letting God know your concerns. Before you know it, a sense of God’s wholeness, everything coming together for good, will come and settle you down. It’s wonderful what happens when Christ displaces worry at the center of your life.”(The Message).

  4. paulruppert says:

    I wonder what it was like in the Garden of Eden, did Adam worry? As I read that portion of the Bible, I can find no reference to man worrying about things, or did he? The first signs of worry come with the fall of man. Yes Adam goofed it up for all of us, by making a bad choice, or should I say the wrong choice. Then the Bible emphasizes man worrying. It appears it has not subsided even a little since then. I think Jesus may have meant from the worry sense, not to worry about things that don’t exist as yet. I see people worry about things that don’t exist, but in fact the reality of a problem intensifies and is manifested into reality due to worrying. The fact is that a situation that exists we can make worse due to worry. Worrying I think is created by man and not the devil, although the devil will play the worry card and in doing so will cause man to make things worse. I think God by telling us not to worry about clothes and food may have meant there are more important things I want you to think about in your life. For the factors of clothes, wear what makes you look good, not others, for the office, what makes you not stand out since Jesus has that job, outside jobs, common sense. Jesus wanted us to make informative decisions for our life, us the intelligence He gave us. He wants us to depend on Him to work with us for the right decisions in life.

  5. tandgmartin says:

    I think one of the problems of worry is all of the hypothetical situations that we think of that can come up. This of course is what some others are mentioning, especially the part referring to Churchill.
    I have found stopping and praying specifically for whatever starts to bother me brings the “peace that surpasses all understanding.” I am then able to look at the problems in the light of Christ’s perspective, knowing that He is helping me find solutions.
    Great topic, Mart.

  6. rokdude5 says:

    Like Jean said we want control and predictability about our future. Of course neither one is the case though for most of us, our immediate tomorrows are typical of todays.

    To me wanting to have our tomorrows similiar to our todays is a reflection of a peaceful and orderly God. Our Father didnt make a world for us that one day the sun rises in the east but the next day it rises from the south 6 hours later than the day before. He didnt make a world that gravity wanes and waxes. Granted life is unpredictable which to me shows God is in control – not us.

    Again, “anxiety” is having anger about some event in the future that most likely wont happen. In order for a show or a book to pique the interest of its audience, there has to be some sort of anxiety point – perhaps several whether it be fighting off the monster bug, keeping the farm or not losing one’s love, etc. A story would not be there without it.

    Our Father has taken care of all our own anxieties if we learn to just trust Him. Ps 37:3 We WILL face perilous times in our lives but our Father has it all figured out. Keep in mind in the end of the Greatest Story ever told, God wins and we will be at His side if we choose to be there.

  7. SFDBWV says:

    Ok I have to tell you, when I first read the head liner “Why We Worry”. I rightaway thought of Alfred E. Newman’s famous comment “What Me Worry”.

    For the more intelectual of you out here Alfred E. Newman is a fictious character in a satire comedy magazine called “Mad Magazine”.

    His claim to fame is that he just doesn’t worry about anything.

    I don’t believe that Jesus wants us to be so unconcerned in life that we don’t take care of business.

    I believe that if I am to be a good example of a Christian. That it means that I am to be a law abiding citizen, a productive member of society. That my conduct be of the highest moral behavior and that I am a friend to all. That I have a good work attitude and show responsibility in all matters.

    In working toward these goals I can’t help but at times be concerned about different matters. That doesn’t mean I have a lack of faith or that I worry needlessly. It means that life will produce a certain amount of anxiety.

    I wonder when I see pictures of African people starving to death if they worried about being fed.
    I can’t believe people on an airplane who are having serious problems don’t feel fear and are worried.

    At the same time some homeless people have not only, no worries, they also have no responsibilities, and like it that way.

    No, I believe that life is going to produce some amount of worry at times. That jesus want’s us to not obsess about trivial matters, but to trust God, in all matters.

    In it all there is a balance of living. John 10:10 ” The thief cometh not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy: I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly.”

  8. SFDBWV says:

    My appologies to all the women out here. But I am about to give an explanation that may sound a bit sexist. It is not meant in any way to be so. Please bear with me and if needed forgive me.

    My 90 year old mother-in-law, worries about everything. She even worries about worrying because she hears different preachers say it is wrong to worry.

    She isn’t alone. I know several elderly ladies whom all worry about everything. Especially their grown children, grandchildren and even their great grandchildren.

    They worry about their safety and most of all worry about their salvation.

    Such worry from such loving women are who has kept the Church alive. Here in small town America and especially in religiously oppressed countries like China,Russia, and too many to name.

    Our own concern (worry} about our own salvation, is what brings us to salvation.

  9. pegramsdell says:

    Remember that song? “Don’t worry, be happy”…. :)

    Sometimes I am reminded to keep praying about a situation when I am worrying. Does that make sense?
    Like if I’m not worried about it, I’m not committed enough to it, I don’t care enough. Weird, huh?

  10. daisymarygoldr says:

    Today’s topic is intertwined with “Knowing the will of God’s” and coincidentally this was the very subject of discussion yesterday during our family devotion time. Mart, living 24/7 with the greatest worry wart ever, I perfectly understand your worrisome feelings and I’m sure God understands them too.

    As for me, I am the exact opposite and what I tell people at home is what I will tell you: worry is nothing but figments of our imaginations which most of the time never happens… and so, I choose to always be as happy as a lark and live life as a worry-free flower!

    Unlike the fowls and the flowers… fallen people worry when we try to accomplish our own will. Our will contradicts His will because it is caught in the trap of the devil, who has taken us captive to do his will. 2 Tim 2:26.

    Therefore, everything we think or imagine is bent toward evil from childhood. (Gen 6:5; 8:21). Hence, when we ask, we do not receive, because we ask to satisfy our pleasures…. and when our prayers are not answered, it causes us to worry.

    However, for people like us that are born not of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God… it is important to realize that there is only one will in this entire universe… only one will is accomplished and that is— the will of God.

    When we understand that we can accomplish nothing of our own will, and that we are not free to do anything independent of God and His purpose… we will no longer live the rest of this earthly life for evil human desires, but for the will of God. 1 Peter 4:2

  11. daisymarygoldr says:

    It is the will of God that we know the truth. Knowing the truth sets us free from worries. … and the truth in Acts 17 is: God has made the world and everything in it. It is He who has created… and is sustaining us and our loved ones.

    …This Master of sky and land does not… need people to run errands for Him i.e. to fight against injustice or poverty to make this world a better and safe place… as if He couldn’t take care of them Himself.

    …He made the entire human race and made the earth hospitable, with plenty of time and space for living… not for us to get engrossed in the concerns of living in this world… rather we could seek after God… and not just grope around in the dark but actually find Him….

    …He’s so near to us when we call and cry out to Him in need. We are not apart from Him… we actually live and move in Him. When we are aware of this, His peace drives away every fear.

    Peace is known in knowing God’s truth which puts all our anxieties to rest and the truth is: “You are my God!” My future is in your hands…” Ps 31: 14-15. When we trust God for today… we will quit worrying about our tomorrows. We will no longer say today or tomorrow we will go there or we will do that. “Why, we do not even know what will happen tomorrow. Instead, we will say, “If it is the Lord’s will, we will live and do this or that.”

    Only when our will is for God to do His will the God of peace will equip us in every good thing to do His will… both for us and our loved ones. So Mart, this is my prayer for you today: “In times of trouble, may the LORD answer your cry. May the name of the God of Jacob keep you safe from all harm. May He send you help from His sanctuary and strengthen you from Jerusalem.” (Ps 20: 1-2)!

  12. HEY REV says:

    Hello all
    This is many time what I pray (out loud)
    Is everything I just prayed the whole answer? Is there a blessing bullet that will solve it all. “NOT” Because life throws old and new things on us ever day. It did for Jesus and it will with us. Bottom line is continue to walk and talk with Jesus and slowly the worries will get less. Will it go away altogether. I always pray that it will but guess what the next day it’s there again but with less concern.
    Believe me as you grow older the things you worried about in young age will not be there, but replaced with life in the older pace. I know I’m there now
    Won’t go on and on it will just more words.
    God bless you all.
    Quote: the irony of life is that by the
    time we’re old enough to know our
    way around, we’re not going
    Hey Rev.

  13. bubbles says:

    If this is a little off-topic, please delete this.
    What does one do when parents worry and worry about their grown children?

    My father is a believer, but he worries about me. I have not taken trips, and not done things I wanted to{not dangerous} because it is easier to not do them than to have him worry about me. Honestly, it’s not worth the battle.

    So the question is: What should I do? Thank you for any input on this. This is a burden.

    Funny story: This evening I took my large dog for a walk down a trail. About a mile into the two mile walk, we happened upon a pit bull that wasn’t tied up.
    Forgot the pepper spray tonight. I began to pray as we walked quickly away. A thick stick and several large gravels later, we had to turn around and go back (there was no other way). The Lord protected us! I was really afraid and worried. My dog weighs about 74 pounds, and he is challenged in the self-control area when other dogs are present.

    Isn’t it wonderful how the Lord watches over and cares for us? I was so thankful that I could pray right there, and He took care of the problem right away!

  14. MarkStrauss says:

    I think perhaps it is a question of negativity.
    He obviously wants us to consider these things, just not worry. So much as we should use all that He gives us, with Spirit guidance, and seek knowledge with His wisdom…….. we should be cognizant of both our needs and others.

    But who worries about paying the rent? We worry about NOT paying the rent and the consequences that entails. If your loved one has an illness, do you first think of His glory in the situation followed by how you can love on them? Or do you instantly jump right to “Oh no! I hope they are alright!”?

    He said not to worry, not “don’t think”.

  15. Brenda Chance says:

    I’m worried that the Church will spend so much time worrying about itself and its comforts that they will forget to have God’s heart for people who do not know Christ. I’ve spent my whole life praying for the people in the 10/40 window and now that there is a possiblity for the Light to break thru, I’m worried that so few in the Church are rallying for the oppressed. It’s one thing to hear the gospel and reject it, but Iran has 70 million people who have never heard of Christ’s love for them. Why isn’t the Church in America praying? We have a voice of authority before the thrown of grace, we should use it.

  16. BabyJ says:

    Not sure what else I could add to today’s blog. I agree this topic does go hand in hand with understanding the will of God. I also agree that the main reason behind my worrying is for want of a guarantee of the future. Even though the Lord says that his purpose is to prosper me and not to harm me, it’d still be nice to know what exactly that entails.

    It’s funny though, as I learn more about God, the easier it is to combat the worries that normally plague me. When those problems or worries start up, scripture kicks in…. almost like a louder version of my conscience. Coming here to read these conversations has been a big help with that also.

  17. sjd says:

    If all things do work together for good for those who love God and are called according to His purpose, then what circumstance will you find yourself in that will be too great for God to fulfill His promise? What circumstance would you not want to happen if God is working in it perfecting us?

    Why worry if every situation will lead to God’s final purpose? The more I learn about God’s Sovereignty, and my unworthiness, the more I can rest in Him no matter what happens. ALL things work together for good…………………. Having Christ as my Lord and Savior is far more than I deserve (I deserve Hell), so if I lose everything (of this world), I still have everything (Christ).

    Sunday, a question was posed to our congregation, “What do we Christians possess that we often do not take advantage of, failing to rest in that which is ours to enjoy?” One man answered, “We are able to enjoy a worry free life.” I know this man, and the statement fits him well.

    When I was driving in a foreign country years ago at night time, I was not as comfortable as when I was riding in a car with a resident of that country in control at the wheel. The more I relinquish control to my LORD, the more I can rest in this life. My “Driver” will never leave me nor forsake me. My destination is secure.

  18. Rcarter says:

    I have come to realize that I worry because I want to be in control. Yet, the greatest things that have happened to me have clearly been blessings and not functions of my master plans. I have lost many days of “life” – peace, rest, appreciation of my daily blessings, energy, availability to be a blessing – because I chose to worry or focus on things that were beyond my control. Every once and a while I consider the lost time and opportunity and trust God a bit more.

    Your post and the responses were a blessing this morning.

  19. Mart De Haan says:

    Seems to me that our Lord wants us to be known by the kinds of matters that concern us. Peace of mind and happiness of spirit are not necessarily good for us or others. The Apostle Paul said that in the middle of all of the physical stresses of his life there was also the heavy internal pressure of his concern for others (2Cor 11:28).

    As your comments indicate, what matters is what we are concerned about and how we handle it. David’s Psalms show how often he was overwhelmed with the fears of life, yet his faith was shown by the way he repeatedly brought his concerns to the Lord.

    When worries bring us to our knees they have helped us. When they preoccupy us with ourselves, our fears, and weaken our trust in the Lord, we are letting them work against us.

    Worry is a bit like doubt and fear. It can either bring us to the Father in heaven, or it can drive us away from him.

  20. 1heart says:

    All of us worry about anything. But for me there is only one explanation to that. God gave us the freedom to choose, to worry or not to worry. We have the ability to think (thanks to GOD) and plan for the future, the problem is we cannot see what lies ahead. And there comes the freedom to choose, to choose to trust GOD and not to worry or to trust in my abilities.
    Everytime I worry, I pray to GOD to help me trust HIM and get my worries away. I felt so humbled and then HE is so strong. When we are weak then GOD is so strong because we let HIM do the things that are beyond our control. If we do not worry it´s so easy we set HIM aside and forget about HIM. Worrying is just simply a test of our faith and trust in HIM. GOD is great and HE is far greater if we just put our trust in HIM.

  21. Mart De Haan says:

    I’m thinking about the loving concerns that cause us to act in behalf of those who need help. Job, God’s best example, was known for his advocacy for the widow, the orphan, and those who had no one to stand for them in court. Micah emphasizes that God is looking for those who love justice and mercy, and who walk humbly with their God. Paul said he felt, daily, the heavy internal pressure of his concern for the church.

    Such concerns are equivalent to a healthy kind of “worry” or “anxiety” that causes us to do what the Lord enables us to do to act and pray in behalf of others.

    While unhealthy worry eats us up and puts distance between ourselves and God, the right kind of “worry/concern/anxiety/fear” motivates us to do what we can, with God’s help, for our own good, the help of others, and God’s honor.

    Obviously then, the caricature/cartoonish “don’t worry–be happy” image of a believer with a perpetual smile on our face is not a healthy, realistic, or desirable goal.

  22. SFDBWV says:

    Seems to me that there is a vast difference between having compassion for someone else’s suffering and worrying about it.

    When confronted with anothers need, I can feel sorry for them and aid them in whatever way I can. I don’t equate that with worrying.

    The mental picture of worry I get is someone suffering about the questions of “what” and “when”.

    As I stated earlier, I can understand worrying about someone’s salvation.

    Jesus said not to worry about, who? Read what he said. Jesus said not to worry about “yourself”. His entire point is to put our minds at rest about only thinking about ourselves. His teaching directs us to always be “concerned” about others.

    Worry will consume you if you let it. Fear and trust God. Do what you can and trust God for what you can’t.

    Even trust God for the people we worry about.

  23. xrgarza says:

    I have been a Christian for a very long time, I first got save in 67′ when I was only ten y/o but because of life and all of my growing up I needed to complete, it wasn’t until twenty years later when I seriously began to study and practice my proclaimed faith.

    Yet even though I was practicing and trying to discern truth from rhetoric it has taken me about twenty-one years to finally pass my worry free test the first time around.

    First of all I found that it is much easier said than done, but it has to be taught, and if you don’t have a teacher it can still be learned but it will take you much longer, twenty-one years in my case.

    Every time that I was faced with a circumstance whether it was my children moving in, being short on cash, losing my job, automatically my stomach would go into convulsions, like a natural instinct. One day while doing my devotions everything I read pointed to “don’t worry” I knew that I was on the verge of losing my job, but at that instant something caught my attention and it’s like I surrendered mainly because I was tired of the pain I went through every time I faced a battle.

    Like the monkeys spoken of in today’s ODB, my exhaustion caused me to be more relaxed and it was almost facetiously that I surrendered, but the blessing that came with it is indescribable.

    I lost my job and God showed up, the next day two companies called me requesting me to go and work for them, I don’t even remember applying to their company at least within that year, I have no idea how they found me other than my Lord placed my application on the top of their pile. And that has been almost a year and a half ago. Praise God

  24. saled says:

    bubbles, just some thoughts on your question about what to do when your parents worry too much about you. I have been the same kind of worried parent as your Dad. My older daughter has given her Dad and I lots to worry about, things like hiking alone and moving from Maine to Florida on her own. A tremendous help was the fact that she called home every day. It helped us move from worry to concern. Like SFDBWV said above, worry will consume you if you let it. You may be able to do more of the things that you would like and help your Dad experience more peace at the same time. It’s obvious that you are very considerate of their feelings. When you find something that is worth the battle, you will find a way to help your Dad not be consumed by worry.

  25. Mart De Haan says:

    SFDBWV, I understand your point about the difference between concern and worry. There is a real difference. Yet where one ends and another begins is a judgment call and matter of degree.

    For sure there is nothing good about excessive, unproductive anxiety whether we call it concern, worry, or fear… unless it brings us to the end of ourselves… to the beginning of a real trust in God… and to prayerful, productive action.

  26. sawaybon says:

    Long before “Don’t Worry, Be Happy” became a popular song, I remember a song from my childhood titled “Why Worry When You Can Pray”. It tells us to trust Jesus. One of the big reasons why we worry, I think, is a lack of trust. We’re not convinced that He can handle the situation. Yet He proves it over and over again that He is faithful, and will handle anything that comes our way.

    I leave in three weeks for overseas ministry, in spite of a medical condition that has not totally been resolved. I am choosing not to worry about that, but to trust God with my health. We are leaving our young adult children behind, which has the potential for worry about them. Again, we choose to trust God for their well-being. He will take care of them, and give them direction for their futures. I praise the Lord as my son follows Him in obedience by being baptized this Sunday.

    “My Lord knows the way through the wilderness — all I have to do is follow.” And to do so without worrying.

  27. SFDBWV says:

    To clearify my point. I will try and explain that we should not worry about ourselves. We must trust that God is in control of our lives and leave it there.

    However it is right to be concerned about the needs of others.

    We need never worry about anything out of our ability to change or make a difference. Only in this situation can prayer be our only effort. Trusting that God is in control and leave it there.

    Yet when praying for anything, remembering Jesus’s instructions. If at first the prayer is not answered, keep on asking. Do not give up, God is faithful and in His time your concerns will be met. Never give up on God, He has never given up on you.

  28. pegramsdell says:

    If we believe and not doubt that God is willing and able to take of our concerns, then when we pray, we should not worry about them. It shows a lack of faith.
    That all sounds good, and I know it’s true, but sometimes I worry anyway. Especially when it’s about my children. I am working on that. It takes discipline.
    Also…I agree that I worry when I can’t control the situation. Again, that shows a lack of faith.

  29. daisymarygoldr says:

    “Werry” interesting discussion! It is true that when we depend on ourselves, worries bring us to our knees and draws us nearer to the Father in heaven… but along the way at some point they should also help us learn to commit ourselves to trust God for everything. We cannot be ever learning, and never able to come to the knowledge of the truth.

    Speaking of worry in terms of concern…It is true, God is looking for those who love justice and mercy and care for the widow, the orphan… and so, when I am fortunate to have a family, God equips me with resources to care for them. Likewise, if I am widowed or orphaned, I know that God who is the Father to the fatherless and a defender of the widows…will certainly take care for me. So, why worry?

    Regarding Paul’s concern for the church in 2Cor 11:28, Paul’s concern was that they should not be deceived and led astray by false teaching. Personally, I perfectly relate to Paul’s burden and also to his burning anger in v29… but this also does not give me any reason to worry, because I do relate to what Paul says in 2 Corinthians 4, The Msg…

    “Since God has so generously let us in on what He is doing… Remember …All we are is messengers, errand runners from Jesus… It started when God said, “Light up the darkness!” and our lives filled up with light as we saw and “understood God” in the face of Christ, all bright and beautiful…

    We’ve been surrounded and battered by troubles, but we’re not demoralized; we’re not sure what to do, but we know that God knows what to do; we’ve been spiritually terrorized, but God hasn’t left our side; we’ve been thrown down, but we haven’t broken…

    So we’re not giving up. How could we! Even though on the outside it often looks like things are falling apart on us, on the inside, where God is making new life, not a day goes by without his unfolding grace…The things we see now are here today, gone tomorrow. But the things we can’t see now will last forever”

    With that understanding I sport a perpetual smile on my face not to escape reality but to remain happy in the midst of harsh reality…because I choose to rejoice not in my circumstances, not in my overwhelming concern for others or myself but I rejoice in the Lord… always… even when others consider my image to be a caricature/cartoon!…and that is exactly how I choose to witness my life in Christ… a sure laughing buffoon to my fellow believers.

    However, to the unbelieving world when my life reflects peace amidst turmoil and smiles through my tears… it is a refreshing ray of light that conveys the clear message: “this is what it means to believe in the true God”.

    God’s beautiful message filled within my uncomely earthen vessel shines a ray of hope which promises eternal life: devoid of worries, pain, suffering, sorrows or tears but blessed with peace unsurpassable and joy unspeakable… to all those who believe in the name of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ! “What Me Worry”:)

  30. pegramsdell says:

    Please pray for me as there are things going on today in my life that are causing me to be anxious. Thank you.

  31. daisymarygoldr says:

    pegramsdell, you are in my prayers…

  32. SFDBWV says:

    I entered “worry” into the search window on the RBC Home page and came up with 1050 resulting places to go within RBC for explanation.

    Our Daily Bread July ? 2008 had the heading “What Me Worry” It was a good read. As I am sure all of them are.

    I have a library filled with devotionals relevent to trusting God. They are all good advice and good directionals. “Come to Me all you who are heavey laden and I will give you rest”

    Happy journey to all.

  33. daisymarygoldr says:

    In my last comment I meant to say “when I am fortunate to have a family, God equips me with resources to care for them”… i.e. the widows, orphans or those who do not have a family.

    Steve/SFDBWV, Thanks for the above info on “worry” and also for sharing your insights…

    Despite all our Bible knowledge, this journey can become quite wearisome and unhappy. At times loneliness and fear is inevitable. But God has not left us here in this world to live as nobodies. He has not only provided us with the Comforter but more practically speaking, a wonderful spiritual family.

    So, during times when life becomes too unbearable and we do not have the strength to read, pray or feel the comforting of the Holy Spirit… we can avail the prayerful and moral support of fellow believers in Christ.

    We do not have worry about bearing our burdens/concerns all by ourselves. This is what the church is all about and this is exactly why we are encouraged to not quit assembling together even more, since we see the day coming closer. Just my thoughts…

  34. bubbles says:

    Dear saled,
    Thank you for your comments. They were so kind.
    Like your daughter, I do call him when I’m out.
    When there is a hike, the dog is always with me.

    But, he still worries. It’s just most every time
    I want to do something aside from going to work, etc.,
    I’m either told that it’s a stupid idea, or “why would you want to go there, or do that?!? That’s dumb.”
    I’m going on vacation with a good friend in a few weeks, but it has turned into a terrible burden. I didn’t get to sleep until 1:30 a.m. this morning because I know he’s going to be angry about our trip.
    My friend and I are extremely safe. We don’t do anything to be ashamed of. I haven’t been on vacation
    in probably 20 years. Now, because of him, I’m really dreading it, and not looking forward to it–just wishing it was already over and done with. My cousins, close friends, etc. always go places. When summer is over, it’s always disappointing because I never go anywhere. . .

    I’m so sorry to vent. There’s much, much, much important problems. This is not a problem. I’m sorry if this was selfish. I just don’t know what to do.

  35. wretch-like-me says:

    Maybe this is too simple…BUT…

    sounds to me like you have loaded this question with ‘heavy’ words…

    “…But was the Teacher asking us to detach ourselves from the REAL CONCERNS OF LIFE?…”

    There are a couple of problems with this statement.

    1. You have used words that have ‘inflamatory’ impact upon the reader.
    ‘Detach’ implies a less than adequate response to the situation and ‘Real Concerns’ gives above average emphasis leading one to expect a response that is immediate and justifiable.

    2. We are reading text from scripture written in one language and translated into English which is notorious for a lack of exactness.

    I do appreciate your attempt to clarify your intent by using the analogy of being created in His Image. However, I think it falls short because it doesnt go far enough to demonstrate HOW HE DEALS WITH CONCERNS WITHOUT WORRY.

    He does not worry because He is All-powerful, All-knowing, All-present and since He never sleeps, He is Ever-Vigilant. He knows the outcome before anything begins. He knows where Satan will attack and the outcome. He knows our weaknesses(how much is too much for us to bear)and we have HIS word that He will not allow situation without also providing the power to withstand or a way to escape.

    The Question Dear Friends lies in our own hearts.

    If there is room for the question, we have made room for it. We have not filled our hearts with the faith that He provides. We have not remembered the countless times He has saved us from the fire… saved us from sin… saved us from ourselves.

    As Jesus showed the disciples in the boat, most times we simply need to Be Still, and know He is God!

    We must have the faith of ‘little children’ who accept God/Jesus at His Word. “I will never leave you nor forsake you.”

    Having said this, let me conclude with one of the major reasons I have observed that points out our need for fellowship with other believers. When we lack courage or need to be reminded of God’s Goodness and Grace, His fierce Protection of His Sheep, His Ultimate Sacrifice and UN-dying Love, we need to turn to other believers who become the Arms and Hands of Christ in this world.

    It is a priceless gift to be a member of the body of Christ… but, it comes with a fathomless responsibility!


  36. dependent says:

    Could it be that those who can easily proclaim that “worry is a choice” and “just trust Jesus, duh” are those that enjoy the gift of faith?

    Many of my ‘seratonin-enhanced’ friends seem unable to empathize with those who struggle with fear or worry. Or perhaps they’ve lived comfortable lives that have not been severely tested by trauma, illness, poverty, etc. Confusing a God-given gift or the unmerited blessings of life with a sense of maturity or spiritual development so often leads to profound disillusionment when one is confronted with life situations where the previously enjoyed sense of security and control are ripped away.

    I fear sometimes that we can stray into religious platitudes, instead of loving, restorative ministry when we assume that others just simply face a choice when it comes to grappling with a weakness.

    For instance, I have always been naturally thin…it is/has been easy for me to smugly say about those who struggle with weight problems (or, gasp, gluttony), “It’s just a choice, a simple matter of physics and self-control. Burn more calories that you take in.” When I do this I am mistaking the gifts of higher metabolism, genetic makeup, etc. for a presumed discipline or self-control.

    That is why I would rather be ministered to by someone who has walked or is walking the path to Christ-given victory in a particular spiritual struggle than those who have “head knowledge” of how it is supposed to be.

    And lastly, worry has a lot to do with perspective. Travel to a third-world country and fellowship with believers there and then come back and “worry” about the same things. I think Jesus was referring to establishing a righteous perspective as he counseled his disciples.

  37. daisymarygoldr says:

    This is from someone who speaks not with “head knowledge” but out of a living experience of growing up for the most part in a country with 77% of its population or 836 million people, living on less than ~ $0.41 per day.

    Malnutrition causes lower serotonin levels… but interestingly this is not the case for the 46% out of the 49% of the world’s underweight children. Can the impoverished and severely persecuted “serotonin-enhanced” friends empathize with the affluent and comfortable that struggle with fear or worry? Can’t say for sure…

    Need a practical tip from those who have walked and walking the path to Christ-given victory? Daily exercise of our God-given faith along with a good diet of His Word can help raise serotonin levels. “Has not God chosen those who are poor in the eyes of the world to be rich in faith” …It was a blessed privilege for me to be ministered to by the materially poor yet the spiritually rich!

    Indeed it is a matter of perspectives of “we can certainly do it” or “we look like grasshoppers in the eyes of the giants” Num 13. Faith is a God-given gift… He is no respecter of persons and has given to every one “the” measure i.e. the same portion of faith. “Why do you worry”?

  38. dependent says:

    Hmmmm…guess I’ll have to chew a bit on your assertion that every one is given the same portion of faith.

    I’ve always read 1Cor 12:4-11,13:2 and Rom 12:6 along with the phrases in the gospels like “ye of little faith” or even the term “rich in faith” to indicate that there are not only differing levels of faith, but some are blessed with an increased gift of faith. Paul commends and abundance or richness of faith in 2 Cor 8:7.

    I agree that the fruits of the Spirit can be developed and that abiding in the vine will produce those Christ-like characteristics that oppose fleshly worry.

    I’ll have to study more, but I think the many references to God as “no respector of persons” refers to his unprejudiced and fair judgements without regard to a person’s status, position, nationality, etc.

    There are people (saved and unsaved) that are blessed with an inherently positive and upbeat perspective on life. They didn’t earn it, or grow it…we all know people with this wonderful trait. Mart’s thought-provoking comments simply make me wonder if some who live with less worry, do so simply because of inherited traits, a spiritual gifting of faith, the good fortune to be born in circumstances of plenty, etc. Nothing wrong with enjoying those gifts–just saying that it would be wrong to assume it’s as easy or natural for others who are gifted differently, are born with different traits and address life from different circumstances.

    But lest I create an unwanted ‘rabbit trail’– I’ll leave it at that. And thanks again Mart for another thought-provoking topic.

  39. plumbape says:

    I’m “concerned” about Poohpity and her Mom! I’m praying the Lord will draw her in His arms when He takes her mom home. She is such a giving person!

    Praying for pegramsdell also…

    My thoughts are in line with Daisy on this subject, she has such a wonderful way with words. Thank you

    My modem crashed and I went to assist my daughter moving to Orlando and visiting a brother in St Pete. Have only been able to “Be Thinkin About” my blog family. Love you guys in the name of Jesus…!!
    the ape in Indy

  40. poohpity says:

    Thank you Ape! My mom was put in Hospice late Wednesday night. She and I are both struggling with this slow process of dying. She is in and out of reality but when she is in she is a bit scared. I pleaded with the Lord last night to please help her not be frightened but to have comfort. She seems to be fighting to stay alive. This is all very confusing but I am trusting the Lord’s heart in all this. I have pulled back from all the family bickering and am just trying to keep my eyes focused on her comfort and the Lord’s provision. It is very hard to say the lest. Thank you for your thoughts and prayers.

  41. wretch-like-me says:

    While I do not know personally your struggle with depression and uncertainty, please understand that I do struggle with my own. I have been taking meds for depression for more than 10 years and I still experience valleys of ‘seeming’ death. I,also, care for a spouse with increasing disability and that can be overwhelming at times of my own weakness. And of course, I am old enough now, that I am losing dear friends, relatives and recent acquaintances to death.

    What I have learned, is to give and take support with other Christians I can trust. I wish I could say every Christian can be trusted; but, that just isn’t so. Again, I believe that is why we are encouraged to develop long-term relationships fellowshipping with other Christians. (We have that happening at this site.)

    In addition to having the support of others, we need to, as Paul writes, strive to mature in our faith… able to feed ourselves from the Word. Reading the Word often enough that we can recall verses that speak to a particular situation we experience. It is the Holy Spirit who directs us in this way… wielding the Sword of Truth.

    Lastly, I am reminded of Christ’s words,”You have not because You do not ask…and when You ask, You ask for the wrong reasons.” He has promised to provide for us all that we need and more…that includes faith.

    My friends tell me that I often sound ‘Preachy’ when I begin to share what I believe. I apologize if I have come across that way. (that is why I end with huggs)


  42. wretch-like-me says:

    Dear One, You hold a very special place in God’s Heart of Hearts. Take strength in His presence with you at this time. You can be the Pillar of Faith among your family. Your quiet peace at this time will shine thru as a beacon to all around you including doctors, nurses and hospital/hospice staff. We are lifting you Up!!!

    Who Knows??? You may decide to change your user id from Pooh Pity… to Pooh Warrior!!!


  43. pegramsdell says:

    Appreciate the prayers for me as well.

  44. wretch-like-me says:

    forgive me for the oversight

  45. dependent says:

    No need whatsoever to apologize–“preachy” has never come to mind as I read your posts.

    I appreciate your thoughts and sharing a bit about your life. (however, methinks you may have jumped to a conclusion or two about me–but such is the nature of this form of dialogue ;-)

    I agree wholeheartedly with your observations about developing long-term, trusting, fellowship. It has been only in the last several years of my Christian walk that I’ve enjoyed truly transparent and ‘agape’ fellowship (in the true sense of the word) with several brothers who have proven trustworthy.

    It is in that context that I am closely familiar with the sort of troubles you shared. And I can say with complete confidence that God is faithful–even through those dark times when we can’t see his purposes. I too have cared for a spouse that went through years of pain and suffering with little hope of relief. As we struggled together through that valley, we weren’t aware, as we are now, the extent of pruning and preparing he was doing in our lives. He IS faithful to work his good will in our lives even when the circumstances cause us to question him.

    And this is why I feel so deeply for my friends who must gracefully endure, as we did, the well-meaning but misguided attempts of other dear friends who try to ‘explain’ a nice tidy neat package of platitudes that come from a truly blissful ignorance of the depths some must travel.

    And I can hear in your words the profound revelation of the Shepherd’s care that sometimes comes only from the hardest trials. Grace and peace to you!

  46. pegramsdell says:

    Thanks to all of you for your prayers. Still struggling, but God is faithful. :)

  47. Whale says:

    I worry cause I am frightened when control is gone. I have learned that God is always there though, to lean on while the chaos is going on. I shelter in Him as I handle the things that are under my control. Thank you for helping us to look at our faith.

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