VIDEO Waging War on Worry – Joseph Overcoming Disappointments

Waging War on Worry

“Worry is a futile thing, somewhat like a rocking chair, although it occupies your time, it doesn’t get you anywhere” (author unknown). In His famous Sermon on the Mount, Jesus warned all worrywarts with the phrase “Take no thought” (KJV) four times. Modern versions render it “Do not worry.” Worrying seems harmless enough. No big deal, right? After all, everybody worries. John Haggai said, “You could write on countless American gravestones the epitaph: Hurried, Worried, Buried!” Can you relate?

The definition of the word “worry” indicates its nefarious nature—“To torment oneself with or to suffer from disturbing, negative thoughts.” It comes from an Old English word wyranwhich means, “To strangle, choke, bite, harass, or to tear at the throat with teeth.” The imagery is of a predator biting the neck of its prey to suffocate it. The enemy’s goal is to drain the spiritual life out of us with stress and anxiety. Holocaust survivor Corrie Ten Boom wrote, “Worry doesn’t empty tomorrow of its sorrow; it empties today of its strength.” Worry happens when we assume responsibility God never intended for us to have. Peter provided some sound advice, “Give all your worries and cares to God, for He cares about you” (1 Pt. 5:7). God invites us to unload all our heavy burdens on Him. Mary Crowley said, “Every evening I turn my worries over to God, He’s going to be up all night anyway!” We should often do what the old hymn suggests, “Take your burden to the Lord and leave it there.”

Worry is an issue of faith—do we trust God or not? Worry is a sin because it is a symptom of a lack of trust in God. 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?” (Mt. 6:30). Mahatma Ghandi said, “There is nothing that wastes the body like worry, and one who has any faith in God should be ashamed to worry about anything whatsoever.” If a Hindu had that much insight, when will blood-washed, born-again, Spirit-filled Christians realize that God is in control? Too “Many people have ulcers these days caused by mountain climbing over molehills.”

  1. Don’t worry about daily provisions.

Centuries before supermarkets and shopping malls, Jesus 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. 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?” (Mt. 6:25). If God clothes and feeds the natural world, He’ll certainly provide for His spiritual family. Even when God feeds the birds, He doesn’t throw the food in their nests! Remember, God rained manna from heaven to feed the Israelites, but they still had to gather and prepare it for consumption. Notice too that God did not provide a weekly or monthly supply. Instead, He provided a daily supply, Why? So they would depend on Him every day. The Lord’s Prayer states, “Give us this day our daily bread.” Human tendency is to stockpile and hoard, but God wants us to trust Him day by day for provision.

 

The word “provision,” contains the prefix “pro” meaning “before” and the root word “vision” which means “to see.” Put them together and you get “to see before.” In other words, Jehovah Jireh—The Lord Our Provider—sees our need in advance and begins to supply it. God placed the ram on Mount Moriah before Abraham arrived and realized he needed a substitute for Isaac. And my God shall supply all your need according to His riches in glory by Christ Jesus” (Phil. 4:19). Why worry about provision when your Father is the great Provider?

  1. Don’t worry about things you can’t control.

Jesus challenged His listeners, “Which of you by worrying can add one cubit to his stature?” (Mt. 6:27). Another version reads, “Which of you by worrying can add even one hour to his life?” We spend too much time obsessing and stressing out over things like traffic, weather, gas prices, aging, the stock market, the past, politics, etc. It’s counterproductive to worry about things we can’t change. Instead, Jesus told us to focus on our chief concern, Seek the Kingdom of God above all else, and live righteously, and he will give you everything you need” (Mt. 6:33).

  1. Don’t worry about the future.

Don’t be anxious about tomorrow. God will take care of your tomorrow too. Live one day at a time”(Mt. 6:34). Now, this does not mean that we shouldn’t plan or save for the future. If we fail to prepare, we prepare to fail. If we don’t pray and plan for the future, we won’t have a very good one. It means, “Don’t worry about the future, for God is already there!” To quote Corrie Ten Boom again, “Never be afraid to trust an unknown future to a known God.” Every tomorrow has two handles—the handle of anxiety or the handle of faith. Billy Graham observed, “I’ve read the last page of the Bible. It’s all going to turn out right.” We can rest in the realization that God’s purpose and plan will ultimately be fulfilled. Have you ever wondered why God doesn’t reveal our entire future to us all at once? First, it would probably overwhelm us. Secondly, He wants us to walk by faith. We may not know what the future holds, but we don’t have to worry because we know Who holds the future!

A modern beatitude reads, “Blessed is the man who is too busy to worry by day and too tired to worry by night.” Paul gave us the ultimate weapon to win the war against worry—“Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything” (Phil. 4:6). Why worry when you can pray?

Ben Godwin is the author of four books and pastors the Goodsprings Full Gospel Church. To read more articles, visit his website at bengodwin.org and take advantage of his 4-book bundle for $25.00.

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Joseph Overcoming Disappointments

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Do Not Worry

Therefore I say to you, do not worry about your life. Matthew 6:25

Most Bible readers know that the paragraph breaks in the text are supplied by modern editors. No problem there—such breaks are helpful. But sometimes they separate sections which are better read together. For instance, in the Sermon on the Mount Jesus’ words about worry (Matthew 6:25-34) are often separated from the words that precede them: His words about money—the dangers of laying up treasures on earth rather than in heaven (Matthew 6:19-24).

After speaking about money, Jesus says “Therefore,” and proceeds to caution against worrying about the lack of money: “Therefore I say to you, do not worry about your life.” We worry more about money than almost anything else. Yes, money is necessary in life. But Jesus says to trust God instead of worrying. Seek God first and He will provide (Matthew 6:33). The apostle Paul summarized Jesus’ words in Philippians 4:6-7: Don’t worry about anything (life, money). Tell God in thankful prayer what you need. Then let the peace of God replace your worry.

If you are tempted to worry about anything today, commit it to God with thankful prayer. And let His peace guard your heart and mind.

Worry is an indication that we think God cannot look after us.  Oswald Chambers

The Holy Spirit Is The Giver of Gifts

Romans 12:1-13

Do you feel ill-equipped to serve the Lord? A sense of inadequacy is one of many excuses people use to avoid ministry and service, but it’s not a valid one. Evading the Father’s call can affect His work on earth, prevent the blessings that come from obedience, and keep us from eternal rewards in heaven.

Jesus Christ knew all about the human tendency to feel inadequate. That is why He assured His followers they would receive a Helper—the Holy Spirit—who would come to abide in them forever (John 14:16). The Spirit enables, energizes, and equips believers to serve the Lord. One of the ways He aids us is by providing spiritual gifts, which are capabilities given to believers.

Our heavenly Father has a ministry in mind for each of His followers. Therefore, necessary spiritual “equipment” has been selected to help us carry out His work, and these gifts were planned by our Creator before we were born. It is His purpose that we embrace our gift and combine it with other believers’ gifts in order to serve Him wholeheartedly as the body of Christ. Even the smallest job contributes to the Great Commission and the strengthening of Jesus Christ’s body, the church.

The Lord has a plan for every believer. To ensure that we can meet His expectations, He first builds natural talents into us. At salvation, He adds a spiritual gift. Then the heavenly Father opens doors of opportunity and the Holy Spirit manifests His power so that we can carry out the work set before us.

Do You Have A Bag with Holes?

“Ye have sown much, and bring in little; ye eat, but ye have not enough; ye drink, but ye are not filled with drink; ye clothe you, but there is none warm; and he that earneth wages earneth wages to put it into a bag with holes.” (Haggai 1:6) 

This biting description of a frustrating lifestyle, penned by one of the Jewish post-exilic prophets, is both preceded and followed by this appropriate admonition: “Thus saith the Lord of hosts; Consider your ways” (Haggai 1:5-7). When a professing believer somehow never seems to have enough and his money bag seems filled with holes, it is time for him to consider carefully his ways before the Lord.

After all, our God owns the cattle on a thousand hills and is well able to supply all our needs. In context, Haggai is rebuking the people of Judah for tending to their own welfare and neglecting the work of God. “Is it time for you, O ye, to dwell in your cieled [paneled] houses, and this house [that is, the unfinished temple in Jerusalem] lie waste?” (Haggai 1:4).

Herein is an eternal principle. Jesus said, “Your heavenly Father knoweth that ye have need of all these things [that is, food and drink and clothing]. But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you” (Matthew 6:32-33). If these necessities of life are not being provided, we urgently need to consider our ways. Are God’s kingdom and His righteousness really our first concerns?

We often quote the wonderful promise “my God shall supply all your need according to his riches in glory by Christ Jesus” (Philippians 4:19). But we must remember that this promise was given to a group of Christians whose “deep poverty abounded unto the riches of their liberality,” because they “first gave their own selves to the Lord” (2 Corinthians 8:2, 5). HMM

Fear of Emotions

And he leaping up stood, and walked, and entered with them into the temple, walking, and leaping, and praising God.

—Acts 3:8

One cause of the decline in the quality of religious experience among Christians these days is the neglect of the doctrine of the inward witness.

Stamping our feet to start the circulation and blowing on our hands to limber them up, we have emerged shivering from the long period of the theological deep-freeze, but the influence of the frosty years is still felt among us to such an extent that the words witness, experience and feeling are cautiously avoided by the rank and file of evangelical teachers. In spite of the undeniable lukewarmness of most of us we still fear that unless we keep a careful check on ourselves we shall surely lose our dignity and become howling fanatics by this time next week. We set a watch upon our emotions day and night lest we become over-spiritual and bring reproach upon the cause of Christ. Which all, if I may say so, is for most of us about as sensible as throwing a cordon of police around a cemetery to prevent a wild political demonstration by the inhabitants.   BAM011

Lord, open up my heart to receive, and then open up my mouth to declare, the glory of Your mighty work! Amen.

 

O God, know my heart

Search me, O God, and know my heart; try me, and know my thoughts; and see if there be any wicked way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting.—Psalm 139:23, 24.

 

Am I really what I ought to be? Am I what, in the bottom of my heart, I honestly wish to be? Am I living a life at all like what I myself approve? My secret nature, the true complexion of my character, is hidden from all men, and only I know it. Is it such as I should be willing to show? Is my soul at all like what my kindest and most intimate friends believe? Is my heart at all such, as I should wish the Searcher of Hearts to judge me by? Is every year adding to my devotion, to my unselfishness, to my conscientiousness, to my freedom from the hypocrisy of seeming so much better than I am? When I compare myself with last year, am I more ready to surrender myself at the call of duty? Am I more alive to the commands of conscience? Have I shaken off my besetting sins?” These are the questions which this season of Lent ought to find us putting fairly and honestly to our hearts.

Frederick Temple.

 

God Does Delight to Give

‘And the Lord said unto Abraham, after that Lot was separated from him, Lift up now thine eyes, and look from the place where thou art northward, and southward, and eastward, and westward: for all the land which thou seest, to thee will I give it, and to thy seed for ever.” Gen. 13:14, 15

A special blessing for a memorable occasion. Abram had settled a family dispute. He had said, “Let there be no strife, I pray thee, between thee and me, for we be brethren”; and hence he received the blessing which belongs to peacemakers. The Lord and giver of peace delights to manifest His grace to those who seek peace and pursue it. If we desire closer communion with God, we must keep closer to the ways of peace.

Abram had behaved very generously to his kinsman, giving him his choice of the land. If we deny ourselves for peace’ sake, the Lord will more than make it up to us. As far as the patriarch can see, he can claim, and we may do the like by faith. Abram had to wait for the actual possession, but the Lord entailed the land upon him and his posterity. Boundless blessings belong to us by covenant gift. All things are ours. When we please the Lord, He makes us to look everywhere, and see all things our own, whether things present, or things to come, all are ours, and we are Christ’s, and Christ is God’s.