Last time we considered the charge from the apostle Paul that we were not to be Anxious or Worried. This time I want us to take another step into considering how to discover the Fret-Free Life and be cured of the problem of Worry.
WHY DO WE NEED TO BE WARNED AGAINST WORRY?
There are more reasons that I have time or space to address but one of the many is because it is so common. Almost everybody worries about something sometime. It is extremely widespread. It is not limited to a certain class of people. The poor worry and so do the rich. The old worry and so do the young. People who are seemingly on top of the world worry and those at the bottom do as well. The unchurched worry and so do those who regularly attend church. Worry is an experience that is no respecter of persons. It comes to one and all when given the opportunity to do so.
We worry about all sorts of things. Some worry about how to get money, then they worry about how to keep it. We worry about the things we have and the things we do not have. We worry about what we have said and what we should have said. We worry about what we have done and what we should have done. We worry about our bodies, our souls, our jobs, our families, our relationships, and many other things. Some worry because they are married and some because they are not. The circle never ends. Some worry about not worrying. We worry over real and imaginary things.
Let me offer an illustration that might be beneficial. I heard about a man who visited friends in Colorado for the first time. He told his host that he was going to walk over to the mountains, which he assumed were nearby, before breakfast. Those mountains that appeared as if he could reach out and touch them were about fifteen miles away.
His host decided to allow him to discover his error on his own. The man set out to walk to the mountains he presumed were just a few minutes away. After a couple of hours, a farmer found him sitting on the bank of an irrigation ditch, taking his shoes off. The farmer asked, “What are you doing?” The man said, “I’m going to swim that river.” The farmer laughed and said, “Man, you could jump across it.” The man was indignant and said, “You folks are not going to make a monkey out of me anymore. I thought it was only a short distance to those mountains and I discover it is miles. Therefore, I am going to swim this river!” We worry about how we are going to cross rivers that do not actually exist.
We need the warning because worry is so utterly useless. Jesus addressed that in his question, “Which of you by taking thought or worrying can add one second to your life or one inch to your height?” You will not live longer or grow taller by worrying. Worry solves no problems, dries no tears, and lifts no burdens. I contend that there are two classes of things about which we should never worry. Never worry about the things you can do something about. That is like lying in bed shivering because you do not have enough cover rather than getting up and getting a blanket. Second, never worry about things you can do nothing about. Psalm 37 says, “Fret not” and then reveals the end of fretting, “it tends only to evil.” Worry never does anything but harm. Worry increases problems increase burdens and produce an abundant harvest of tears.
Worry hurts the person who worries. It has been said that few things do more harm mentally, physically, and spiritually than worrying. It takes a lot of work to kill a person, but a little worry moves us toward an early grave with ease.
Worry hurts others. If we could just be alone and worry without affecting anyone else it might not be as destructive and dangerous as it is, but we cannot. Worry infects others and dampens their spirits. Homes, relationships, and lives are ruined due to the little fox of worry. The person who worries constantly is as annoying as a toothache or a traffic jam on a busy day.
Worry is a wound to the heart of God. I can only imagine God’s disappointment when the person who claims to love, trust, and believe in Him and His Word goes about moping and fretting as though God were either bankrupt or heatless. Worry, therefore, is a sin! I can say that the person who has received the Light of God worries it dishonors God. It is effectively calling His claims and Promises untrue. Worry tends only to evil.
I want to pause one more time and address this more in the next session and give you some hopefully helpful insight as to how to get rid of worry and live the Fret-Free Life.
God bless you as you enjoy this day in Jesus!