Summary: This is about worry.
What do you worry about? The future? Money? School? Work? What you’re going to eat or wear? Sometimes we get caught in a spiral of worry. Worry has a way of compounding itself.
Read Matthew 6:25-34.
Worry can rob us of joy in life. When we worry about tomorrow or yesterday, we compound the problems of today.
1. What is worry?
Worry or anxiety is when we become overly concerned about something. Is that to say we shouldn’t be concerned about food or clothing? This isn’t an excuse for laziness.
A. Worry is NEEDLESS
Sometimes we worry about the past. This is needless. We cannot change the past. What happened happened. There is nothing we can do about it. We should learn from it. If we have made mistakes in the past, we should be smart enough not to repeat them. What we did is done.
B. Worry is USELESS
What good is worry? Who can worry and make their life longer? Who can worry and grow taller? Often we worry about the future. The reality of the future is often not as bad as we fear it will be. Besides, if we can do something about then why worry? We should do what we can. If we can’t do something about it, then why worry? We can’t affect change anyway. If I am worried about a test, I can do something: study. I can’t change what will be on the test, so I shouldn’t worry about that.
C. Worry is HARMFUL
Worry can cause us all sorts of problems. Ulcers can result. Worry can raise blood pressure. It can impair our judgment. Sometimes when we worry we eat. Excessive eating is certainly unhealthy. Sometimes we don’t eat anything, which is equally harmful. Worry can’t add to our height, but it can affect our waistline. Worry can’t add years to our life, but it can take them off.
D. Worry is SIGHTLESS
When we worry, we refuse to learn. We don’t learn the lessons Jesus was teaching here. Have you ever seen a bird driving a tractor? Have you ever seen a bird planting seeds? Have you ever seen a bird do anything to grow or harvest? God takes care of them. Buzzards don’t hunt, but they are the first on the scene when there is a dead deer or fox. We can see this, but if we continue to worry we haven’t learned the lesson. Do flowers operate sewing machines to make their clothes? Jesus says that they are better clothed than kings are. How much more valuable are we, as humans, than the birds and flowers? God created them for us. Jesus asks, “Are you not of more value than they?” If God takes care of the birds and flowers, don’t you think he would take care of us?
E. Worry is GODLESS
Worry isn’t a matter of external forces. Two people can be in the same circumstance and one worried to death and the other perfectly calm. Worry is a state of the heart. In looking at my kids, one is fearful during a thunderstorm, while the other plays as if nothing is going on. When we worry, we do not trust the God who takes care of the birds and flowers to take care of us.
2. How to overcome worry
At some point in life everyone deals with worry. Worry is being overly concerned with something.
This doesn’t excuse laziness. This doesn’t excuse a lack of planning. We can’t just drift through life. Jesus did say, “For which of you, desiring to build a tower, does not first sit down and count the cost, whether he has enough to complete it?” (Luke 14:28). There is nothing wrong with planning. There is nothing wrong with buying food for the week or month ahead. There is nothing wrong with saving for retirement or college. We just can’t become obsessed with it. There are some ways to overcome worry. The first is…
We have to trust God that he will meet our needs. When we worry about where the next meal is coming from that demonstrates a lack of faith in God’s provision. The birds don’t worry about food. The flowers don’t worry about clothes. Jesus said that if worry about those things we have little faith. How much faith do you have? We overcome worry with faith. The second is…
We have to know that God is our father. If God is our father, then we are his children. Jesus says that those who don’t believe in God worry about all these things. Our Father knows that we need them, and he will provide them. He knows what we need, but that is different than wants. We want a lot of stuff we don’t need. Know your Father. Third…