“Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need, and thank Him for all He has done.” ― Philippians 4:6
Today we are facing an enemy that will destroy mankind. Throughout history, we have encountered disease and sickness that ravages families, friends and community; however, there is a greater danger that threatens to kill us from the inside out. It attacks our minds and controls our behavior. We begin to listen to the lies we tell ourselves instead of speaking the truth to ourselves. This enemy is called worry.
“Worrying doesn't empty tomorrow of its sorrow, it empties today of its strength." ― Corrie Ten Boom
Worry is the absolute faith that God is not in control. In Philippians, the Apostle Paul gives us a command, “Don’t worry about anything!” Worry is our greatest enemy, and it attacks everything. Worry has no redeeming value at all. It rots and destroys our minds. It drains and derails our emotions. It paralizes and binds our present. It perverts and distorts our future.
Unfortunately, we sometimes believe that worry will actually help and protect us from danger. We try to give worry value, but justifying an unhealthy emotion is unwise. Worry is wrong every single time! It is good-for-nothing. When we worry, we get stuck in the future and stop focusing on today. Instead of winning the day, we worry about tomorrow!
“Worry weighs a person down.” ― Proverbs 12:25
Worry is derived from the German word wurgen, which means "to strangle, to choke." Worry will choke out the life of God because our hearts and minds get strangled with the worries of the world. Worry highlights the world’s viewpoint and chokes God’s viewpoint.
Worry always asks the question, “What if?”
The “What if” question can plague us and keep us from living our lives with purpose, power, meaning and mission. What if I get sick? What if I can’t play sports again? What if I lose my job? What if my business fails? What if the results come back positive? What if I lose my friend? Worry … Worry … Worry.
Good news: We cannot control the future. If we knew with certainty what the future holds for us, we wouldn’t need to trust God.
Great Certainty = Little Faith
Little Certainty = Great Faith
Great Control = Little Faith
Little Control = Great Faith
We want great certainty and great control, but we also want great faith. This is our problem. A lot of us fall into a trap and think, “Lord, I want to know for sure what is going to happen, and then I will have great faith and I won’t worry.” Instead, we should pray, “Lord, I have no idea what the future may bring, but regardless, I will have unwavering faith and I choose to not worry.”
“The one great crime on the part of the disciple, according to Jesus Christ, is worry. Whenever we begin to calculate without God, we commit sin.” ― Oswald Chambers
Never calculate your life without God! Where there is worry and anxiety, there is lack of faith and trust. There is a strong relationship between them. Faith and trust will bring peace and joy.
Apostle Paul also gives us the antidote to worry, “Pray about everything.” Bobby McFerrin’s song, “Don’t Worry, Be Happy” is a tune that can get stuck in our minds. You are probably singing it now! However, we should change it to, “Don’t Worry, Be Praying.” We go face-to-face with our enemy, worry, using prayer.
Prayer conquers worry and increases faith. Prayer reminds us that we cannot control the future, but we can trust the One who does. Prayer grounds us and gives us a rock-solid foundation. No matter what the situation, we can turn to God with prayer!
Prayer unlocks faith.
Whenever I travel to various countries, I am always challenged and stretched by our FCA leaders who rely on prayer―it’s as if their lives depend on it. Quick words of prayer or selfish requests for a blessing don’t make up their prayer lives. Instead, they call upon the God of the Universe to do the impossible and miraculously show up to transform lives. They pray big prayers, which carry big faith. Big breakthroughs. When I hear their prayers that are drenched in hope, deliverance and devotion, my faith grows.
Prayer and faith also go hand in hand. How are we going to stop worrying? Let’s cultivate a rich prayer life. Pull the weeds of worry. Plant seeds of faith through prayer in every part of your life: friends, teams, family, marriage, work, relationships and church.
Worry about nothing.
Pray about everything.
Remember, we’re on the team that wins the day. We don’t need to worry. God is in control.
Father in Heaven, forgive me for the times I worry about things I can’t control. My faith is weak in the times of trials. Increase my faith today so I can win the day. Release me of worry and anxiety. Give me freedom from the things that bind me. Help me to live today with Your power. Unlock the faith inside of me. I place all my faith in You. In Jesus’ name, Amen.