Friday, June 15, 2012

Worry...is it choking the life out of you?

My life verse is Matthew 6:33.  "But seek first His kingdom and His righteousness and all these things will be given to you as well."   I just keep coming back to this promise in scripture time and time again.

And just what are  "all these things"  this verse talks about?  To find that out we need to go back and read the verse in context of the chapter in which it is written. The chapter begins by telling us not to worry about our life, the simple necessities...food, clothing, and shelter. These are  real needs in our lives not just desires and wants. And yet, we are told simply...do not worry.  After all, look at the birds of the air and the lilies of the field...God takes care of them...how much more will he take care of you, His beloved child?!

When we learn to not worry over how God will provide for us and just trust that he will, it becomes so much easier to pursue living an obedient life that will glorify God.

So...don't worry!  Now...please believe that I do not say this lightly!  God has graciously shown me that I can rely on His promise that He cares about my needs.  I have seen it play out in my life time and time again.  I also know that this is a hard thing...this not worrying. Because, even though God has shown Himself good on His promises, there have been times, even seasons in my life, where I did not live out my belief on those promises. I have learned the hard way, not what worry can do for me, but what it can do to me.

 
Did you know that the word worry derives its meaning from an Anglo Saxon word which means...to choke?  I think that is such an accurate description of the word.  In fox hunting the word worry is used to mean "the action of the hounds in tearing to pieces the carcass of a fox". Worrying tears us apart and chokes the life out of us...the very life that we were worried about in the first place.  A bit ironic, don't you think?

Let me share some examples of how this verse has had such an impact on my life and how it has played out...

As a young college student, with a limited music/voice scholarship and no other financial resources, I needed to figure out how I was going to make up the rest of the money that I would need to attend college.  My parents in no way were able to help me out because of their own limited funds.  I did, under the advice of an older and supposedly wise person, apply for and receive a student loan. I attended Berry College for two years. I then transferred to a Christian College in Michigan...many miles away from my home state of Georgia.  I began to realize this was indeed God's will for my life  because after attending the Christian College for three years and graduating with a bachelors degree I found that the only money I owed for my education was from  Berry College.  Now I'm not saying I was not supposed to go to Berry...perhaps I was just to trust that God would provide....just as He did for my last three years of college. 

There were many times in those years I just trusted God for my needs (food and clothing) and He did provide.  Here is a small sampling of the many ways He provided:
  • when a mysterious bag of food, and much needed toiletries appeared in my dorm room...I had not told anyone of my needs!
  • a woman, whom I did not even know, heard me sing as I was traveling with one of the professors (he preached and I would provide the special music), wrote out a check to the college  and handed it to my professor instructing him to put it towards my school account.
  • many times grants and scholarships were provided when I didn't even know where they came from
  • a check for twenty dollars would arrive in the mail at the time I was in true need...this happened many times. 

One would think that after having experienced God's provision over and over through those  years that I would have learned what a faithful and trustworthy God we have, but no!  The next season of my life proved to be just as challenging. . 

I'm wondering...how are you on this journey with worry?  Is it tearing you to pieces, are you losing sleep?


I hope you stay with me as I continue to share this worry journey in my next post.  Those sleepless nights don't have to be a recurring event in your life!  
Click here to read Part two: Worry…Part Two






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