Earlier I wrote about Worry isn’t Warning. You can read it HERE. I also spoke on Worry earlier this year at MPNCanton. You can listen or subscribe to the podcast HERE.
I talked in the previous post about the fact that we convince ourselves that worry is warning, but that it isn’t. Warning is warning. Worry is worry.
I also talked about the 2nd reason that we worry is that we believe it is a way of life. We think everyone worries, and it’s okay if we do too. We’ll pick up there!
2) Worry isn’t a Way of Life. In fact it’s the opposite of the life God wants us to live. Worry is in fact worthless.
Matthew 6:27 “Can any one of you by worrying add a single hour to your life?“
Worrying doesn’t change the situation, it just causes you a bunch of stress and fear.
Worry does not empty tomorrow of its sorrow. It empties today of its strength.- Corrie Ten Boom
Instead listen to this in
1 Peter 5:6-9 (NLT) So humble yourselves under the mighty power of God, and at the right time he will lift you up in honor. 7 Give all your worries and cares to God, for he cares about you. 8 Stay alert! Watch out for your great enemy, the devil. He prowls around like a roaring lion, looking for someone to devour. 9 Stand firm against him, and be strong in your faith.
Now verse 7 tells us to give ALL our worries and cares to God. Why? Because He cares about you.
But even beyond that, I love verses 6, 8-9 because it gives you permission to do something as a way of life instead of worrying.
First look at verse 8-9. Stay Alert! Watch out for the enemy…
I don’t think it’s our job to worry about the enemy. I think it’s just our job to watch out for him.
Verse 6 says, “So humble yourselves under the mighty power of God…”
Humbling myself under the mighty power of God…that sounds like what I do when I worship. I recognize my position and His power!
I believe you can worship away your worry.
When I worship, my attention is redirected away from what I see right in front of me to the object of my worship.
Psalm 121:1-2 I lift up my eyes to the hills. From where does my help come? My help comes from the Lord, who made heaven and earth.
There’s tons of context here but I want you to see the imagery of lifting my eyes up to the hills to see the help coming.
Worship is a secret weapon for you. I realize not everyone is the same, but when I get worried, or stressed. When I’m facing temptation. Any number of things. I turn on worship music. It changes the atmosphere.
Taking that thought even further Paul says this in Philippians 4:6-7 (NIV)
Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. 7 And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.
Here’s that same passage in the Message paraphrase
Philippians 4:6-7 (MSG) Don’t fret or worry. Instead of worrying, pray. Let petitions and 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 and settle you down. It’s wonderful what happens when Christ displaces worry at the center of your life.
No one can pray and worry at the same time. – Max Lucado
The translators of the Message say “Let your praise shape your worries into prayers, letting God know your concerns.” You have the power to turn your worry into worship. Telling God exactly what you’re worried about and focusing on Him, His goodness toward you, and His example of faithfulness throughout Scripture, history and your life.
Let me give you a warning. I’ve counseled with a lot of people and I want to help you avoid something that many of these people had to find out for themselves.
Sometimes you can pray so much about your worries that you worry more. You can literally pray yourself in a worry circle. You can pray to God so much about the things you’re afraid of that you’re more afraid.
You can thank God so much for bringing you out that you actually get stuck in it.
That’s why I think it’s important to worship your way though worry. It takes my eyes off my worry and puts my eyes on the object of my worship.
I would encourage you to pray and tell God what you’re worried about. Thank Him for delivering you. Then worship and focus on Him and not on your worries.
I don’t know what you are worried about today, but I know that God desires to free you from that worry.
Worry isn’t warning, and isn’t a way of life. Don’t give it more power than it has.