Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Worried?

My heart has been heavy all day with the keen awareness that we are all carrying something. Our loads are real and heavy. This journey is long. We grow weary from the strain.

Our legitimate concern gives birth to fear which can suck the courage and faith right out of us.

What are you worried about right now?
Your marriage.
That debt. 
Those test results.
Him.
Her.
The temptation. 
Your job.
Their decision.
How to parent that child.
What they think.
That conversation.

Most of us know that anxiety and worry are not our friends. They are so often weapons of the Enemy. Yet, like a bad boyfriend we are sucked back in to the comfort they provide. 

As unchecked worries infiltrate our hearts and minds, we start making emotional decisions--not based on Truth, but as a consequence of our fear.  Wisdom takes a backseat to our panic.

This often quoted passage came to mind from Philippians and the fresh perspective of the Message translation was a powerful charge.

Don’t fret or worry. Instead of worrying, pray. 
Let petitions & 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 & settle you down.
It’s wonderful what happens when Christ displaces worry at the center of your life. 

Phil. 4:6-7 The Message

What if we gave up worry and fear for Lent? 
It is likely to be more challenging than chocolate, facebook or Diet Coke.
It would be true sacrifice for many of us to 'give up' our pet fears. To surrender to God the idols of our hearts--the things we cling to more than Him and fear losing the most.
 
What would our thought lives look like if we really believed God was Sovereign?
That His heart was for us and that He could be trusted?
How might we be changed if we spent as much time pondering His words as we do our worst case scenario what ifs?

He died that we might live...really live. In freedom and in trust, not the bondage of worry and fear. Why is it so hard for us to embrace the reality of that gift?

7 comments:

elizabeth said...

I love the Lord. Seriously. I am a stranger to you and I live in another part of the country than you and this is EXACTLY what I have been struggling with and I needed to read and hear tonight. That is the Lord's work right there. I am so thankful for your blog and want you to know how the Lord works through you to bless so many. Thank you Jennifer!!

Alison Martin said...

I love your blog. The song Where I Belong by Building 429 provides great perspective on worry. I listen to it a lot. : )

Eleanor said...

Thank you so much! I really need to read this. My husband was laid off last week and we both have been struggling with fear. Yes I do know th HE has a plan and I need to turnit over and trust that plan. Reading this has helped me to do that.
Thank you,
Eleanor Hyder

Rebecca said...

I have been a long time lurker, but I had to delurk to share that this was also *exactly* what I needed to hear tonight. I am in the midst of a transition at work where there is a lot of 'unknown' and a lot of 'out of my control' and in being consumed with worry, I have been unable to enjoy my work, or my life. Time to let Christ displace my worrying!

Pam said...

I've been a constant worrier/fearer all my life and I'm now a grammy. Last year I did Lent for the first time (the church I attend does not practice Lent)and gave up chocolate. Laying in bed this morning I was trying to decide what/if to do and came up with doing '40 Anonymous Random Acts of Kindness' and now I'm also going to do what you wrote. I'm going to print it and carry it with me...I will be doing a lot of praying.....

KBroome said...

I think my middle name is worry. I can't even pick one thing I worry about the most, there is too much! I am thankful for this post. Your title grabbed my attention and I am so glad I read.

Deidre said...

I love this post. I feel like I'm forever 'taking my thoughts captive' and most times, I worn slap out. I worry more than I admit to my ownself. Thanks for your words. God used them to speak to my heart today.