Summary: Christ who is the ultimate honorable, just, pure, and lovely truth worthy of praise will take our anxieties and fill us with what is honorable, just, pure, and lovely.
It’s Christmas time again, in a little over the week we will be celebrating Jesus’s birthday. Many of us will be visiting family, eating big belly busting dinner followed and maybe preceded by Christmas cookies. And of course ripping open presents.
What a hectic time of year.
I mean, how many of you have finished your Christmas shopping?
Mailed all your gifts and cards?
Done all your baking?
How many of you are wondering how you are going to pay for all of the fun of Christmas?
If that wasn’t enough there are all the parties, trying to get work done before the holidays.
It all builds up and before you know it you are like Clark Griswold going nuts from the strain and stress and anxiety of trying to put together the perfect family Christmas.
We are not alone in facing anxiety in life. Everybody at some time or another has faced it. 2000 years ago the good people of Philippi felt it.
And so when Paul wrote them he encouraged them not to be anxious but to place it all on the wide shoulders of Christ.
As we face our own anxieties.
Be they the looming deadline at work
Getting the checkbook to balance when the cost of living is rising faster than your paycheck
That huge science project your teacher just assigned
Despite the fact that we want to avoid creating anxiety in our life. We seem to do our best to create more even when we have good intentions.
There have been a few times I wanted to do something for Julie, and that is a good thing, right? Well, she had a specific way of doing it but I being the rather stubborn I refused to do it her way even though it really didn’t cost me anything to do it her way, which of course got her mad and myself mad. All of this anxiety created because we were both too stubborn to give an inch toward the other.
In our sin we create anxiety and it frightens us
But we are not alone in our fear anxiety
I once heard a story about two guys named bill and Joey who were both on the High School dive team. Bill and Joey were best friends and often practiced diving together. Joey was the better of the two friends but Bill didn’t mind too much but he was bothered because his friend never did well in dive meets because he would always get so uptight during the meet. So, during one competition Bill tried to get Joey’s mind off of the competition by acting like they were in practice. Bill started joking and acting silly and on the first dive, he jumped off yelling, “Joey, watch me, I am an eagle”. Joey followed and pulled off a near perfect dive. On the next go around Bill did the same thing yelling “look at me I am jumping over the moon”. Joey again followed with a near perfect dive. Later they began to announce the winners of the competition. As they gradually worked their way up the awards, Bill started getting nervous for his friend. When they finally announced that Joey had gotten 2nd place, bill was thrilled for his friend because he had never ranked that high before, but he wondered who managed to beat him. Boy was Bill surprised when they announced he took first place.