Summary: We need to stop worrying and here the Lord shows us how.
How to Stop Worrying
Sermon by Rick Crandall
McClendon Baptist Church - Oct. 15, 2008
*Have you been worrying about anything lately? Most of us have. These are worrisome times. One preacher said that, “Americans are so keyed-up nowadays that I, a minister, must report that it is almost impossible to put them asleep with a sermon.” (1)
*I could probably give him some pointers on how to do it. (That’s one of the things I worry about from time to time.) But there is a serious side to worry. It’s bad for us. Worry gives us headaches, stomach aches, high blood pressure and even more. I am sure that worry helped send my dad to an early grave at the age of 55.
*And worry is a thief. It robs us of the joy that belongs to us, if we belong to Jesus Christ. And worry steals the time we could be spending focusing on the good things in life. On top of that, worry is a sin. Not once or twice, but three times in this passage the Lord tells us not to worry. In vs. 25, 31 & 34 the Lord said, “Do not worry.” And the reason why is because we can’t be trusting the Lord and worrying at the same time. It would be like trying to stand up and sit down at the same time. You just can’t do it. It’s got to be one or the other. So we need to stop worrying and here the Lord shows us how.
1. First: Keep the right perspective.
*The Lord leads us to do this in vs. 25, where He said, “Therefore I say to you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink; nor about your body, what you will put on. Is not life more than food and the body more than clothing?”
*Is life more than the food we eat and the clothes we wear. Of course it is, but we tend to worry about a lot of those lesser things -- things that really don’t matter in the long run. One of the most classic ways for us to worry is to make mountains out of molehills. There’s no telling how much unnecessary hurt we go through this way, but it sure is an easy thing to do. And most of us do it a lot.
*Years ago I bought a used Chevy Corsica. I really liked that little car, but a few months after I bought it, it started making a loud noise going down the road. The noise was coming from the back and I started worrying about it. “Oh man, my universal’s going out. I just know it! It’s going to cost me hundreds of dollars to get that thing fixed!”
*This went on for weeks. The noise was getting louder and louder, and I was worrying more and more about that universal. Finally, I took the car in to get it checked. And the noise was just my back tires. (They were out of balance.)
*That car didn’t even have a universal! I was making a mountain out of a molehill, and we do that a lot. But the Lord wants us to keep things in perspective, so He asks a question, “Isn’t life more than food and the body more than clothing?”
*Jesus is reminding us here that life is not just about what we can put in our bodies or what we can put on our bodies. Life is not just the toys we can pile up at home or the money we can pile up at the bank. Life is a gift. It’s a precious gift from God. Life is the awesome privilege of being able to exist, think, choose, move and grow. Life is the awesome privilege of being able to relate to family and friends. Life is the awesome privilege of being able to love.
*Rick Warren put it this way:
-Friends, this is what life is all about, loving God and learning to love each other. If you miss this, you have missed the purpose of your life and I pity you. Because life is not about accomplishments. It is about relationships. You were put on this earth to know God and love Him, and to know His family and love them, because that’s whom we’re spending eternity with.
-As a pastor, I have been at the bedside of many people as they were dying. I couldn’t count how many bedsides I have been at. In all of those situations where I’ve been there at the side as people were taking their last breath, I have never once had anybody say, “Bring me my diplomas. I want them close to me.” Nobody says, “Bring me my trophies.” Nobody says, "Bring me the gold watch I got at retirement." Nobody says, "Bring me my palm pilot."