Sermons

Summary: Practical Biblical steps to overcoming worry. Worry siphons the joy of the Lord right out of a believer and it hinders our potential as Christians.

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I told my wife I was preaching a sermon on worry, and I worried about it all week long.

People like to have control of things. That in itself is a good reason for us to worry.

Everything we produce is designed to give us the greatest degree of control. From the TV remote to the antilock breaks on your Lexus… Everything is geared to give us greater control over the circumstances and situations in our lives, because people generally do not appreciate being out of control…

People are programmed with a desire to control: our finances, our relationships, our future… It’s part of our nature. Take a simple example such as the remote control. One remote control gives its master control over the television set, the VCR and the satellite dish…

I had the ultimate remote control when I worked for NBC, part of my job responsibilities included being in a room called MASTER CONTROL. It’s a very intimidating room because it’s full of buttons that do BIG things… Being in CONTROL of MASTER CONTROL is like having the remote control to everyone’s television all at the same time. Whatever you press, that’s what the people see… Which is why we never let children wander around in Master Control… Imagine all the pretty buttons… Kids would go crazy if we let them in there! “PRETTY” (Heffernan style)…

One group of buttons in Master Control commanded 50,000 watts of transmitter power. Another group controlled microwave dishes for tuning in live shots, another panel determined what people were going to see and hear on the air…

But of particular interest was that pretty little panel for the transmitter… That panel worried me most because summer time in Bakersfield meant the potential for problems with the transmitter. The transmitter was liquid cooled, like the engine in your car… And during the summer, those coolant temperatures would reach dangerously high levels. As part of a safety feature, if the temperatures got too high, the transmitter would shut down…

Guess who was responsible for getting us back on the air if there was a transmitter failure?

The Master Control Operator… One false move on that thing could cost the station millions of dollars… Hitting certain buttons in the wrong order in Master Control could be disastrous up at the transmitter.

Now, I was trained to know exactly what steps to take in case the transmitter ever shut down, but the thought of a transmitter failure terrified me so much that I found myself worrying about it on several occasions. You know what worrying about ever it did for me when the transmitter actually did shut down. It only impaired my ability to think clearly and act as quickly as I should have to restore the transmitter back to the air.

I had nightmares about transmitter failures. There’s nothing worse for a Master Control Operator to be sitting at his post, in full control than to hear that fateful sound of going off the air…

One minute you’re kicking back with Days of Our Lives on the air, the next minute: PFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFF!!!!! It’s a bone chilling and terrifying sound because it means your job is on the line if you don’t get that transmitter back on the air. Time is money in television media.

Every day of my life as a Master Control Operator was influenced by my concern over the possibility of a transmitter failure.

The point is that worrying about the possibility of a transmitter failure never helped me to perform better at my job… It only made my job more stressful. And it never made me perform better when we did have a transmitter failure either. In fact, if anything at all, it caused me to react more slowly than I should have because I was so petrified about it happening.

In the same way, worry hinders our ability to walk lives of faith and strength as Christians.

Worry siphons the joy of the Lord right out of a believer and it hinders our potential as Christians.

Jen and I watched the first episode of The Amazing Race #5 the other night. During that leg of the race, the competitors were given this 50 pound side of beef they had to haul by hand for a half mile or so.

These two gals were trying to haul their beef when the first one finally gave out. She mustered every bit of energy she had, but it wasn’t enough, so she hoisted the heavy burden on her teammate, who ended up carrying it 4 blocks past their destination before they figured out they had gone too far…

Worry has the same effect on our lives as 50 pound side of beef on the shoulders of a runner… It slows us down. It exhausts our strength…

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