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We are people who worry. We worry about our health, about the kids, about our job, about our relationships, the economy, the country, the world. I, for one, am an expert worrier. I can find something to worry about in just about any situation, no matter how good it might be.  

Researchers are discovering that we are anxious for nothing. I read an article, entitled, “85% of What We Worry About Never Happens”. My first response was an anxious thought – “You mean 15% will???”

From the article, 

“Five hundred years ago, Michel de Montaigne said: "My life has been filled with terrible misfortune; most of which never happened." Now there's a study that proves it. This study looked into how many of our imagined calamities never materialize. In this study, subjects were asked to write down their worries over an extended period of time and then identify which of their imagined misfortunes never actually happened. Lo and behold, it turns out that 85 percent of what subjects worried about never happened, and with the 15 percent that did happen, 79 percent of subjects discovered either they could handle the difficulty better than expected, or the difficulty taught them a lesson worth learning. This means that 97 percent of what you worry over is not much more than a fearful mind punishing you with exaggerations and misperceptions.”

But it gets better.  You see, we have vastly greater reasons for anxiety-free living than statistics! Listen to the words of our Lord.

Luke 12:22–31 

22 And he said to his disciples, “Therefore I tell you, do not be anxious about your life, what you will eat, nor about your body, what you will put on. 23 For life is more than food, and the body more than clothing. 24 Consider the ravens: they neither sow nor reap, they have neither storehouse nor barn, and yet God feeds them. Of how much more value are you than the birds! 25 And which of you by being anxious can add a single hour to his span of life? 26 If then you are not able to do as small a thing as that, why are you anxious about the rest? 27 Consider the lilies, how they grow: they neither toil nor spin, yet I tell you, even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these. 28 But if God so clothes the grass, which is alive in the field today, and tomorrow is thrown into the oven, how much more will he clothe you, O you of little faith! 29 And do not seek what you are to eat and what you are to drink, nor be worried. 30 For all the nations of the world seek after these things, and your Father knows that you need them. 31 Instead, seek his kingdom, and these things will be added to you.

Jesus makes two basic points: 1) the presence of worry reveals the absence of faith and 2) our Father in heaven is infinitely faithful!  

We worry when we fail to apply the most basic principles of faith to the reality of our life. Our Father faithfully feeds the birds and clothes the flowers of the field. HOW MUCH MORE will He provide for us: His eternally elect, blood-bought, united-to-Christ, filled-with-the-Spirit, heirs of eternal glory??  

What more could our Father do to convince us that He really, truly, actually “has this”? We just need to believe it.

Overheard in an Orchard

Said the robin to the sparrow, I would really like to know 

why those anxious human being rush around and worry so.

Said the sparrow to the robin, Friend, I think that it must be 

they don’t have a heavenly Father such as cares for you and me. 

Whatever worries you carry today, I urge you to take them to your loving, heavenly Father – and then leave them there.  And then pick up a promise on your way out. 

  • My God will supply all your needs according to his riches in glory.-Philippians 4:19
  • God is able to make all grace abound to you, so that in all things, at all times, having all that you need, you will abound in every good work. -2 Corinthians 9:8  
  • Cast thy burden upon the Lord, and he shall sustain thee. -Psalm 55:22  

Recommended Reading

As you may have heard, last week the PCA lost two prominent pastors. Harry Reeder, pastor of Briarwood PCA and Tim Keller, author and founding pastor of Redeemer PCA, were both gifted pastor’s and evangelists at heart. I was blessed by each of them. 

2 Comments

Thanks, Pastor Dale, I needed this this morning. I’ve realized that sometimes the heart of my anxiety is selfishness instead of submission to the Lord.
Thanks for this wonderfully written article Pastor Dale! Read it start to finish and stopped and whispered this little prayer: “Lord, You know”.

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