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Summary: Worry and Faith are opposing forces. Worry will cripple your walk with God, because worry is the flesh screaming to take control.

Worry the Enemy of Real Faith

Drew Stephens

Do you worry? All of us do. Perhaps a better question is how often and how intently do you worry?

What kind of things do you worry about?

Are they mostly the big things…

· World Events

· Crime

· Your Finances

· Your Relationships

· Your Children

· Your Mate

· Your Job

· Your Health

Or do you also worry about somewhat less significant issues…

· Your Clothes

· Your Weight

· Your Appearance

· What others think about you

·

Again and again God’s Word exhorts us not to worry.

“Who of you by worrying can add a single hour to his life?” Matt 6:27

“An anxious heart weighs a man down…” Proverbs 12:25

“Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you.” 1 Peter 5:7

“Do not be anxious about anything…” Philippians 4:6

God tells us again and again not to worry and yet all of us worry.

So what is worry and why is it so attractive to us?

WORRY – what is it?

A. Worry is an EMOTION

B. Worry is an ATTITUDE

C. Worry is an ACT OF THE WILL

The picture behind the word “Worry” is very descriptive.

Have you ever heard the phrase “Like a dog worrying a bone.” Its an old English phrase that contains the picture behind the word worry. A dog will shake, chew, gnaw and lick and bite on a bone for hours, trying to wear it down. It’s a compulsion. The dog will work and work on that bone unless something of great importance interrupts him. And even when he becomes exhausted of worrying the bone a dog will go and bury it, so he’ll know just where to find it later. Left unchecked a dog will work that bone until it is totally dissolved.

Now when it comes to us humans, when we submit ourselves to worry –WE BECOME THE BONE. Through worry we allow ourselves to literally have the life shaken out of us.

Now if you think I am exaggerating let me replace the word Worry with the word Stress.

D. Worry is both the result of, and results in STRESS.

The more we worry the more stress we incur upon our lives and the more stress in our lives the more we tend to worry.

What does stress left unchecked lead to?

1. Physical Ailments

1. Hypertension

2. Ulcers

3. Anorexia Nervosa

4. Asthma

5. Cancer

6. Angina

Disease after disease either results from or is contributed to by stress. In fact if you simply look at the word

Disease = DIS –EASE= not at peace, stress, worry.

Read encyclopedia article:

1. Stress and therefore worry is a real threat to our lives PHYSICALLY.

2. Stress, worry and anxiety can also threaten our lives RELATIONALLY.

Worry can often incapacitate our relationships. We become so consumed with the dread of what might happen that we limit ourselves and prevent those around us from getting to close.

3. Stress and Worry can threaten our lives EMOTIONALLY.

Proverbs 12:25 “Anxious heart weighs a man down, but a kind word cheers him up.”

A. Worry can rob us of the joy of NEW EXPERIENCES.

A few years ago my daughter Melissa took her first plane ride by herself. She was to fly back to Indiana to surprise her grandparents. Before she left she was very concerned that the airline might lose her in Chicago and that she might miss her plane to Indiana where she was to be picked up by her aunt. To comfort her I explained how good of care the Airlines take of your luggage. I told her that I’ve flown all over the world and though it may have been delayed, I have never lost a piece of luggage that I checked with the airline. I told her if they take that good of care of a suitcase how much better care will they take of precious 9 year old girl. Now that did comfort her a little, but because she was worried she missed out on some of the adventure of striking out in the world on your own. Really she missed some of the adventure of growing up. She did arrive safely and I believe she really enjoyed the return trip.

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