Category Archives: Worry/Anxiety

Remove Grief and Anger From Your Heart

Ecclesiastes 11 is an interesting chapter. He seems to suddenly give financial advice. I would need to reflect or study longer on verse 1, but in verse 2 he is clearly talking about diversifying assets / investments. He then seems to lay out some principles about rain and trees which seem to indicate that there are simply some things we cannot predict perfectly or control. It builds upon the end of verse 2.I find it particularly on point when he points out that those of us who are looking for a perfect time to do something, he refers to sowing seed, may never have a harvest. If we always wait for the perfect time, it never comes.

He then ties it back in towards YHWH by reminding us that just as in these events (e.g. rain, wind, trees falling, etc.), we will not always understand the will of YHWH, our Father.

He finishes the financial advice by encouraging us to diversify again. Do not sow all your seed in the morning or evening, but do both.

He then pivots in verse 7 and highlights that we should enjoy the good times in life because there will certainly be hard times. I think he gives forth bad advice in verse 9, encouraging us to follow the impulses of our heart and then promptly warns us that we will be judged by YHWH for these actions. Following impulses by our hearts is plain bad advice. Perhaps he did not mean it the way it sounds. After all, he clearly warns that we will be judged for it.

Jeremiah 17:9

   9“The heart is more deceitful than all else
And is desperately sick;
Who can understand it?

Clearly we should not “follow our hearts, but rather YHWH himself”.

He closes with some very good advice to not let grief and anger in our heart pull down our joy in life. Life is fleeting and we must not waste it on our own impulses or on grief and anger in our heart.

Ecclesiastes 11

Cast Your Bread on the Waters

      1Cast your bread on the surface of the waters, for you will find it after many days. 2Divide your portion to seven, or even to eight, for you do not know what misfortune may occur on the earth. 3If the clouds are full, they pour out rain upon the earth; and whether a tree falls toward the south or toward the north, wherever the tree falls, there it lies. 4He who watches the wind will not sow and he who looks at the clouds will not reap. 5Just as you do not know the path of the wind and how bones are formed in the womb of the pregnant woman, so you do not know the activity of God who makes all things.

      6Sow your seed in the morning and do not be idle in the evening, for you do not know whether morning or evening sowing will succeed, or whether both of them alike will be good.

      7The light is pleasant, and it is good for the eyes to see the sun. 8Indeed, if a man should live many years, let him rejoice in them all, and let him remember the days of darkness, for they will be many. Everything that is to come will be futility.

      9Rejoice, young man, during your childhood, and let your heart be pleasant during the days of young manhood. And follow the impulses of your heart and the desires of your eyes. Yet know that God will bring you to judgment for all these things. 10So, remove grief and anger from your heart and put away pain from your body, because childhood and the prime of life are fleeting.

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Do you know for sure if you will go to heaven or hell when you die? Are you experiencing in your life the peace and joy of a personal relationship with our Creator and Father? Learn more about salvation through The Message of the Cross.

Overcoming Anxiety and Worry

Anxiety and worry can consume people, even those who are trying to follow Christ. The devil wants to steal, kill and destroy. He targets relationships, including that between you and your Father in heaven. Anxiety and worry are one tactic he uses.

He can even take our good intention to obey God and repent from sins and try to turn us in knots of guilt about every potential mistake we make. If he is effective in this guilt, he can separate us from God as we may become more distant due to our feeling of unworthiness and stress associated with constantly not “being good enough”.

If we let him, Satan can lead us to worry about our concerns of daily living and how we will accomplish what we feel we need to in life, whether it is the basics of food and shelter or more aspirational hopes and dreams. We may start to worry so much and soon find that we are assuming we must accomplish everything of our own power and we lose sight of trusting the Lord and His power. In many cases, the goals we set out to achieve are not even the Lord’s but only our own. If we are pursuing His will in our lives we can be sure He will provide the power and the path to accomplish it.

With the Lord’s help, we can resist Satan effectively.

When dealing with anxiety and worry it is important to pray for the Lord’s help and come before Him humbly. Seek His guidance in scripture.

Philippians 4:4-20

      4Rejoice in the Lord always; again I will say, rejoice! 5Let your gentle spirit be known to all men. The Lord is near. 6Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. 7And the peace of God, which surpasses all comprehension, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.

      8Finally, brethren, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is of good repute, if there is any excellence and if anything worthy of praise, dwell on these things. 9The things you have learned and received and heard and seen in me, practice these things, and the God of peace will be with you.

God’s Provisions

     10But I rejoiced in the Lord greatly, that now at last you have revived your concern for me; indeed, you were concerned before, but you lacked opportunity. 11Not that I speak from want, for I have learned to be content in whatever circumstances I am. 12I know how to get along with humble means, and I also know how to live in prosperity; in any and every circumstance I have learned the secret of being filled and going hungry, both of having abundance and suffering need. 13I can do all things through Him who strengthens me. 14Nevertheless, you have done well to share with me in my affliction.

      15You yourselves also know, Philippians, that at the first preaching of the gospel, after I left Macedonia, no church shared with me in the matter of giving and receiving but you alone; 16for even in Thessalonica you sent a gift more than once for my needs. 17Not that I seek the gift itself, but I seek for the profit which increases to your account. 18But I have received everything in full and have an abundance; I am amply supplied, having received from Epaphroditus what you have sent, a fragrant aroma, an acceptable sacrifice, well-pleasing to God. 19And my God will supply all your needs according to His riches in glory in Christ Jesus. 20Now to our God and Father be the glory forever and ever. Amen.

Don’t let Satan steal your joy! Rejoice in the Lord!

The Lord is near. 6Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. 7And the peace of God, which surpasses all comprehension, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.

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Have you submitted your life to Jesus Christ? Are you living today filled with the peace and joy of truly knowing and following Jesus Christ? Learn more about salvation through The Message of the Cross.

Comfort In Trouble From Recalling God’s Mighty Deeds

Sometimes we experience times of difficulty where we feel distant from God. Perhaps it is because of our own sin or perhaps not. Not all suffering is the direct result of our own sin (consider Job). We may feel as if God has withdrawn from us or is angry with us.

Whether we are experiencing accountability for our sins or just going through tough times we can remember an important lesson to encourage and sustain us. God does not change. He is eternal and unchanging. We can look back at the incredible record of His mighty deeds and power, and of course forgiveness and love, and be encouraged.

Psalm 77

Comfort in Trouble from Recalling God’s Mighty Deeds.

For the choir director; according to Jeduthun. A Psalm of Asaph.

1My voice rises to God, and I will cry aloud;
My voice rises to God, and He will hear me.

      2In the day of my trouble I sought the Lord;
In the night my hand was stretched out without weariness;
My soul refused to be comforted.

      3When I remember God, then I am disturbed;
When I sigh, then my spirit grows faint.

Selah.

      4You have held my eyelids open;
I am so troubled that I cannot speak.

      5I have considered the days of old,
The years of long ago.

      6I will remember my song in the night;
I will meditate with my heart,
And my spirit ponders:

      7Will the Lord reject forever?
And will He never be favorable again?

      8Has His lovingkindness ceased forever?
Has His promise come to an end forever?

      9Has God forgotten to be gracious,
Or has He in anger withdrawn His compassion?

Selah.

      10Then I said, “It is my grief,
That the right hand of the Most High has changed.”

      11I shall remember the deeds of the LORD;
Surely I will remember Your wonders of old.

      12I will meditate on all Your work
And muse on Your deeds.

      13Your way, O God, is holy;
What god is great like our God?

      14You are the God who works wonders;
You have made known Your strength among the peoples.

      15You have by Your power redeemed Your people,
The sons of Jacob and Joseph.

Selah.

      16The waters saw You, O God;
The waters saw You, they were in anguish;
The deeps also trembled.

      17The clouds poured out water;
The skies gave forth a sound;
Your arrows flashed here and there.

      18The sound of Your thunder was in the whirlwind;
The lightnings lit up the world;
The earth trembled and shook.

      19Your way was in the sea
And Your paths in the mighty waters,
And Your footprints may not be known.

      20You led Your people like a flock
By the hand of Moses and Aaron.

Praise Him even in the tough times and remember who He is and what He has done. Let that encourage and sustain you through the tough times. Approach Him humbly in prayer and repent from your sins.

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Have you submitted your life to Jesus Christ? Are you living today filled with the peace and joy of truly knowing and following Jesus Christ? Learn more about salvation through The Message of the Cross.

Worldliness vs. Godliness

Understanding from God is very different from understanding that is of the world. Let us judge carefully which we follow in our lives. Our actions will reveal our motivations.

James 3:14-16

     13Who among you is wise and understanding? Let him show by his good behavior his deeds in the gentleness of wisdom. 14But if you have bitter jealousy and selfish ambition in your heart, do not be arrogant and so lie against the truth. 15This wisdom is not that which comes down from above, but is earthly, natural, demonic. 16For where jealousy and selfish ambition exist, there is disorder and every evil thing. 17But the wisdom from above is first pure, then peaceable, gentle, reasonable, full of mercy and good fruits, unwavering, without hypocrisy. 18And the seed whose fruit is righteousness is sown in peace by those who make peace.

Bitter jealousy and selfish ambition are of the world. Arrogance as well. It brings disorder and evil and never peace. Godly wisdom is pure, gentle, peaceable, reasonable, full of mercy and good fruit and without hypocrisy. It brings peace.

Which will you choose?

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Have you submitted your life to Jesus Christ? Are you living today filled with the peace and joy of truly knowing and following Jesus Christ? Learn more about salvation through The Message of the Cross.

A Living Hope No Matter What We Face

As followers of Christ, we have much to find comfort in, even while we experience grief in this world. We will have hard times. It is nothing new for believers to be scattered amongst pagan countries and cultures. Though we have essentially a pagan and not a Christian nation even in the USA now, there is still much freedom to worship Christ without the type of persecution that His followers have had to experience throughout history… still experience in many other nations around the world even today.

Whether we experience grief from persecution, from the difficulties of living amongst pagan peoples, loss of a loved one, or from other personal situations and trials… we can be comforted, encouraged and find hope in God’s offer and promise of salvation.

1 Peter 1

A Living Hope, and a Sure Salvation

      1Peter, an apostle of Jesus Christ,
To those who reside as aliens, scattered throughout Pontus, Galatia, Cappadocia, Asia, and Bithynia, who are chosen 2according to the foreknowledge of God the Father, by the sanctifying work of the Spirit, to obey Jesus Christ and be sprinkled with His blood: May grace and peace be yours in the fullest measure.

      3Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who according to His great mercy has caused us to be born again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, 4to obtain an inheritance which is imperishable and undefiled and will not fade away, reserved in heaven for you, 5who are protected by the power of God through faith for a salvation ready to be revealed in the last time. 6In this you greatly rejoice, even though now for a little while, if necessary, you have been distressed by various trials, 7so that the proof of your faith, being more precious than gold which is perishable, even though tested by fire, may be found to result in praise and glory and honor at the revelation of Jesus Christ; 8and though you have not seen Him, you love Him, and though you do not see Him now, but believe in Him, you greatly rejoice with joy inexpressible and full of glory, 9obtaining as the outcome of your faith the salvation of your souls.

      10As to this salvation, the prophets who prophesied of the grace that would come to you made careful searches and inquiries, 11seeking to know what person or time the Spirit of Christ within them was indicating as He predicted the sufferings of Christ and the glories to follow. 12It was revealed to them that they were not serving themselves, but you, in these things which now have been announced to you through those who preached the gospel to you by the Holy Spirit sent from heaven—things into which angels long to look.

      13Therefore, prepare your minds for action, keep sober in spirit, fix your hope completely on the grace to be brought to you at the revelation of Jesus Christ. 14As obedient children, do not be conformed to the former lusts which were yours in your ignorance, 15but like the Holy One who called you, be holy yourselves also in all your behavior; 16because it is written, “YOU SHALL BE HOLY, FOR I AM HOLY.”

      17If you address as Father the One who impartially judges according to each one’s work, conduct yourselves in fear during the time of your stay on earth; 18knowing that you were not redeemed with perishable things like silver or gold from your futile way of life inherited from your forefathers, 19but with precious blood, as of a lamb unblemished and spotless, the blood of Christ. 20For He was foreknown before the foundation of the world, but has appeared in these last times for the sake of you 21who through Him are believers in God, who raised Him from the dead and gave Him glory, so that your faith and hope are in God.

      22Since you have in obedience to the truth purified your souls for a sincere love of the brethren, fervently love one another from the heart, 23for you have been born again not of seed which is perishable but imperishable, that is, through the living and enduring word of God.

24For,
“ALL FLESH IS LIKE GRASS,
AND ALL ITS GLORY LIKE THE FLOWER OF GRASS.
THE GRASS WITHERS,
AND THE FLOWER FALLS OFF,

      25BUT THE WORD OF THE LORD ENDURES FOREVER.”
And this is the word which was preached to you.

The grief and pain of this world only lasts for a time. But we are called to action to prepare and to take hold of the offer of salvation. It will not just be given to us if we ignore or dismiss Christ. Taking Christ as Lord of our life should be reflected in changes to how we live. Less of our own selfish, sinful nature… more of Him.

      13Therefore, prepare your minds for action, keep sober in spirit, fix your hope completely on the grace to be brought to you at the revelation of Jesus Christ. 14As obedient children, do not be conformed to the former lusts which were yours in your ignorance, 15but like the Holy One who called you, be holy yourselves also in all your behavior; 16because it is written, “YOU SHALL BE HOLY, FOR I AM HOLY.”

     17If you address as Father the One who impartially judges according to each one’s work, conduct yourselves in fear during the time of your stay on earth;

      22Since you have in obedience to the truth purified your souls for a sincere love of the brethren, fervently love one another from the heart, 23for you have been born again not of seed which is perishable but imperishable, that is, through the living and enduring word of God.

The things of the flesh will fall away, but the word of the Lord endures forever.

Can Worry Add Even An Hour To Your Life?

It is easy and natural to worry. We can worry about our family, our jobs, our children’s performance in school or extra curricular activities. We can worry about our favorite sports teams winning or losing. We can worry about what we will be doing next week. There are lots of reasons we can choose to worry.

But what does Jehovah have to say about worry? Actually, He has a lot to say. One such verse to explore is short and to the point.

Philippians 4:4-9

      4Rejoice in the Lord always; again I will say, rejoice! 5Let your gentle spirit be known to all men. The Lord is near. 6Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. 7And the peace of God, which surpasses all comprehension, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.

      8Finally, brethren, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is of good repute, if there is any excellence and if anything worthy of praise, dwell on these things. 9The things you have learned and received and heard and seen in me, practice these things, and the God of peace will be with you.

I do want to make a point that there is a difference between “worry” about something and taking action to address a situation that needs you to do something. I need not “worry” about my future finances when I walk with Jehovah, but He expects me to plan wisely, consistent with His word, and to exercise self control and manage my affairs well. Let us be careful to avoid the mistake of saying “not to worry” means we ignore the situation. This would be wrong and lead to many troubles.

Rejoicing always sounds tough for most of us… but just because it is different than what we expect, does not mean that it is wrong. Often, what we have become accustomed to is wrong and we need to seek God’s way in the Bible and change our ways. Paul was more than just talk on “rejoice always”. He rejoiced even under persecution such as when he was beaten and put in prison. He rejoiced in the sovereignty and love of the Lord Jesus!

Be thankful for what we have in Christ and what He has already provided us even as we come before Jehovah to ask for our needs or requests.

When we focus on what is good, honorable, right, pure, lovely… we can truly learn, with the help of the Holy Spirit, to be anxious for nothing.

I leave you with a common expression you may have heard before for consideration and reflection.

“And who of you by being worried can add a single hour to his life?”

Do you know who said this first? It was Jesus, as documented in Matthew 6:27.

May the grace and peace of our Lord, Jesus Christ, be with you.

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Have you submitted your life to Jesus Christ? If you die today, do you know for sure that you would be with God in heaven? Learn more about salvation through The Message of the Cross.

Come To Me, All Who Are Weary and Heavy-Laden

Yeshua (Hebrew name for Jesus) came to be among us for our benefit, not for His. He lived to show us how we should live. He took on Himself the punishment for our sin and died to pay for our transgressions. He rose again, overcoming the grave, and is now with the Father. Nothing is beyond His power. He still loves those who follow after Him. He welcomes those who are weary and heavy-laden. He offers us rest.

Matthew 11:28-30

      28“Come to Me, all who are weary and heavy-laden, and I will give you rest. 29“Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and YOU WILL FIND REST FOR YOUR SOULS. 30“For My yoke is easy and My burden is light.”

Notice that Yeshua speaks about rest for our souls. He does not mean that we can be lazy and physically do very little. This has never been the intent. We can find peace and rest for our souls through Jesus Christ.

Many read this scripture and misunderstand because they do not understand farming. I misunderstood for years. When Jesus says to take His yoke upon us, He is not asking us to pull a burden for Him. Quite the opposite. A yoke is a tool that enables more than one animal to work together to pull the load. He offers for us to put on His yoke so that He will help us with our burdens! When He is helping us, the burden is light, despite all of our difficulties. The yoke  does not remove the work or burden. It allows someone else to help you do the work or shoulder the burden.

Take care not to overlook that we must come to Him. He will not force Himself on us. It must be a conscious choice on our part to seek Him. We will still have to deal with all the troubles that life has to offer, but when we share Yeshua’s yoke, He helps us bear the load. We can find peace and rest for our souls no matter what we are dealing with.

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Have you submitted your life to Jesus Christ? If you die today, do you know for sure that you would be with God in heaven? Learn more about salvation through The Message of the Cross.

Even the Wind and the Sea Obey Him

Jesus consistently amazed the crowds and His disciples with wisdom and with miracles. We should pay attention to His wisdom and power and let it serve as a constant reminder that we can trust Him and should indeed model our lives after His life and His teaching.

Mark 4:35-41

Jesus Stills the Sea

      35On that day, when evening came, He said to them, “Let us go over to the other side.” 36Leaving the crowd, they took Him along with them in the boat, just as He was; and other boats were with Him. 37And there arose a fierce gale of wind, and the waves were breaking over the boat so much that the boat was already filling up. 38Jesus Himself was in the stern, asleep on the cushion; and they woke Him and said to Him, “Teacher, do You not care that we are perishing?” 39And He got up and rebuked the wind and said to the sea, “Hush, be still.” And the wind died down and it became perfectly calm. 40And He said to them, “Why are you afraid? Do you still have no faith?” 41They became very much afraid and said to one another, “Who then is this, that even the wind and the sea obey Him?”

A few things to consider. First, though perhaps not the most important, Jesus did not simply stay in one place to teach the people just because He drew a crowd. He knew His mission was to move and teach in many different places to have the most impact. We should take note in our own lives to not just go or stay somewhere because we draw a crowd. Let us instead seek to understand God’s will for our lives and be willing to pick up and move on when He calls us to do so.

Building on that theme, consider that Jesus knew He was leading the disciples into a storm. Sometimes God will lead us out of a comfortable place and into a challenging one in order to help us grow and develop in our faith.

We will all face difficult times, even when we are with Jesus. Our lives will be challenging for sure and sometimes even those of us who love Jesus and try to follow Him will be distracted by our circumstances, as the disciples became afraid because of the storm.

We can take heart and be encouraged by looking to Jesus and remembering the power of God and putting our faith in Him. When things seem difficult, let us always try to remember that God is in control and we can trust Him. It is often in the midst of the storms that we realize we need Him most and  draw near to Him.

What storms are you facing in your life? Do you believe God is in control and can handle the situation… really believe it? That does not mean that you do not prayerfully take actions to help your situation, but it certainly reminds us to pray and look to Him for help and should help us to not worry and be anxious or fearful.

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Have you submitted your life to Jesus Christ? If you die today, do you know for sure that you would be with God in heaven? Learn more about salvation through The Message of the Cross.

When Should A Christian Worry?

We are all subject to be tempted to worry about a great many different situations. There are many trials and sorrows in this world. As a Christian, however, Christ calls us to faith in Him rather than to dwell in worry over whatever situation we find ourselves. That does not mean we are pretend bad things do not happen or fail to make wise decisions to seek out positive outcomes… of course we are to plan carefully and make decisions wisely. The Bible, Proverbs in particular, provides much wisdom and guidance for helping us make good decisions and actively honor God with how we live our lives and the choices we make. However, we are not to dwell in worry and give Satan a chance to use it to defeat our walk with Christ. Worry steals our joy and reflects weakness in our faith. We must instead focus our efforts on seeking the kingdom of God and His righteousness in our lives. Don’t take my word for it… let us explore what Jesus taught in regards to worry.

Matthew 6:25-34

      25“For this reason I say to you, do not be worried about your life, as to what you will eat or what you will drink; nor for your body, as to what you will put on. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothing? 26“Look at the birds of the air, that they do not sow, nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not worth much more than they? 27“And who of you by being worried can add a single hour to his life? 28“And why are you worried about clothing? Observe how the lilies of the field grow; they do not toil nor do they spin, 29yet I say to you that not even Solomon in all his glory clothed himself like one of these. 30“But if God so clothes the grass of the field, which is alive today and tomorrow is thrown into the furnace, will He not much more clothe you? You of little faith! 31“Do not worry then, saying, ‘What will we eat?’ or ‘What will we drink?’ or ‘What will we wear for clothing?’ 32“For the Gentiles eagerly seek all these things; for your heavenly Father knows that you need all these things. 33“But seek first His kingdom and His righteousness, and all these things will be added to you.

      34“So do not worry about tomorrow; for tomorrow will care for itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.

We are reminded elsewhere in scripture as well to remain firm in our faith even when we face difficult or disappointing circumstances.

Romans 8:28  28And we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose.

When we face trials and circumstances where we may feel overwhelmed… trust in God. Our God is bigger than any circumstances we face.

Romans 8:31  31What then shall we say to these things? If God is for us, who is against us?

Psalm 34:4  4I sought the LORD, and He answered me, and delivered me from all my fears.

Psalm 42:5  5Why are you in despair, O my soul? And why have you become disturbed within me? Hope in God, for I shall again praise Him for the help of His presence.

I never want to trivialize the difficulty of overcoming worry, but rather point to God’s word and remind us of the truth that we are not to worry, but put our faith in God and trust in Him. Part of trusting in Him is studying and obeying His word in making our decisions and how we live our life. We also are called to pray and seek His help with humility and confident faith.

Faith in God is not just collapsing in a ball and doing nothing to improve our circumstances and then blaming God for a poor outcome. Faith in God is obeying His word and then asking for, listening to, and obeying His instruction.  Faith typically requires action on our part. Noah heard God and built the boat. Gideon heard God and led the army, repeatedly sending soldiers home. Moses heard God and then went before Pharaoh.  David demonstrated faith through action even as a youth by coming against Goliath.

None of these Bible heroes asked God sat around taking no action. Noah did not tell God to build the boat for Him. Gideon did not just ask God to defeat the enemy without getting involved. Moses did not tell God to just free the Hebrew people without him going to Pharaoh. David did not just sit down and complain about the giant, Goliath, and ask God to make him go away. Neither did they dwell in worry about the situations they faced. They sought God and then took action consistent with faith in God and God’s word!

Matthew 7:7-8 also provides a good reminder that we are to be active in seeking and obeying God, not passive and filled with worry.

Matthew 7:7-8  7“Ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you. 8“For everyone who asks receives, and he who seeks finds, and to him who knocks it will be opened.

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Have you submitted your life to Jesus Christ? If you die today, do you know for sure that you would be with God in heaven? Learn more about salvation through The Message of the Cross.

Do Not Worry About Everyday Life

I felt led by the Holy Spirit to write about worry and anxiety. By our nature it is easy to get wrapped up in concerns about our day to day living. We sometimes get so concerned about the basic needs or wants in life that it consumes us. Jesus Christ came to set us free from sin… He does not then desire us to come into bondage to worry and anxiety.

There are many scriptures that speak to us on this subject, but I have included three in which I have found much comfort over the past few years. I hope they help you as they have me.

The words of Jesus in Matthew 6:25-34…

25 “That is why I tell you not to worry about everyday life—whether you have enough food and drink, or enough clothes to wear. Isn’t life more than food, and your body more than clothing? 26 Look at the birds. They don’t plant or harvest or store food in barns, for your heavenly Father feeds them. And aren’t you far more valuable to him than they are? 27 Can all your worries add a single moment to your life?

28 “And why worry about your clothing? Look at the lilies of the field and how they grow. They don’t work or make their clothing, 29 yet Solomon in all his glory was not dressed as beautifully as they are. 30 And if God cares so wonderfully for wildflowers that are here today and thrown into the fire tomorrow, he will certainly care for you. Why do you have so little faith?

31 “So don’t worry about these things, saying, ‘What will we eat? What will we drink? What will we wear?’ 32 These things dominate the thoughts of unbelievers, but your heavenly Father already knows all your needs. 33 Seek the Kingdom of God[a] above all else, and live righteously, and he will give you everything you need.

34 “So don’t worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will bring its own worries. Today’s trouble is enough for today.

The words of Paul in Philippians 4:4-14

Always be full of joy in the Lord. I say it again—rejoice! Let everyone see that you are considerate in all you do. Remember, the Lord is coming soon.[a]

Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need, and thank him for all he has done. Then you will experience God’s peace, which exceeds anything we can understand. His peace will guard your hearts and minds as you live in Christ Jesus.

And now, dear brothers and sisters, one final thing. Fix your thoughts on what is true, and honorable, and right, and pure, and lovely, and admirable. Think about things that are excellent and worthy of praise. Keep putting into practice all you learned and received from me—everything you heard from me and saw me doing. Then the God of peace will be with you.

10 How I praise the Lord that you are concerned about me again. I know you have always been concerned for me, but you didn’t have the chance to help me. 11 Not that I was ever in need, for I have learned how to be content with whatever I have. 12 I know how to live on almost nothing or with everything. I have learned the secret of living in every situation, whether it is with a full stomach or empty, with plenty or little. 13 For I can do everything through Christ,[b] who gives me strength. 14 Even so, you have done well to share with me in my present difficulty.

Psalm 46

God is our refuge and strength,
    always ready to help in times of trouble.
So we will not fear when earthquakes come
    and the mountains crumble into the sea.
Let the oceans roar and foam.
    Let the mountains tremble as the waters surge! Interlude

A river brings joy to the city of our God,
    the sacred home of the Most High.
God dwells in that city; it cannot be destroyed.
    From the very break of day, God will protect it.
The nations are in chaos,
    and their kingdoms crumble!
God’s voice thunders,
    and the earth melts!
The Lord of Heaven’s Armies is here among us;
    the God of Israel[b] is our fortress. Interlude

Come, see the glorious works of the Lord:
    See how he brings destruction upon the world.
He causes wars to end throughout the earth.
    He breaks the bow and snaps the spear;
    he burns the shields with fire.

10 “Be still, and know that I am God!
    I will be honored by every nation.
    I will be honored throughout the world.”

11 The Lord of Heaven’s Armies is here among us;
    the God of Israel is our fortress. Interlude

As I write this devotional focused on worry and anxiety, I could find many things to be concerned about ranging from personal mistakes or concerns to the billions of peoples globally who reject God and embrace the world. Many persecute Christians.

God does call us to make wise decisions and obey His word in meeting our needs and the needs of His people around the world. However He also reminds us that worry cannot add a single moment to our life. God tells us as Christians to obey and live out His word in our lives and leave the worry behind.

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