Are you good at worrying? Do you get much practice?
At first, it seems easy. Instead of thinking about what you should be thinking about, you focus on one thing. You ask yourself questions you don’t know the answer too, like ‘What if this happens?’ Then you guess what will happen, and guarantee yourself that that’s the only way things will turn out. Then, repeat that process until you collapse.
But, have you noticed that no matter how much you worry, it’s never enough? There’s always more worrying you can do!
And worse than that, worrying doesn’t work. No matter how much we worry, it doesn’t change what happens at all. Maybe we’re not doing it right?
Worrying can appear as anxiety, a paralysing fear. But worry can also show up as ambition: the preoccupation with satisfaction and security.
When Jesus diagnoses our worry, He says the cause is a divided loyalty: We seek earthly things, instead of heavenly things; we welcome darkness instead of light; we try to serve money as well as God. Worry is focusing on our bodies, doubting God, and forgetting His Kingdom. It’s the opposite of what Jesus has just said in Matthew 6:1-18 about generosity, prayer and fasting; it’s greed, materialism, and anxiety. That’s the opposite of how we should live if we are seeking His kingdom (v10, 33).
So, let’s see how to worry. I’ve got 6 tips:
- Value What’s Temporary (v19-21)
- Let Darkness In (v22-23)
- Serve Greed Too (v24)
- Underestimate Your Value (v25-27)
- Disbelieve God (v28-30)
- Forget the Kingdom (v31-34)
(Of course, that’s what Jesus is teaching us to avoid, so we’ll see why each of them is not what we should do).
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- Unity: An Essential Mark of the Local Church by Josh Buice
- Let Your Dream Church Die by Scott Hubbard
- Ten Reasons to Read the Bible Every Day from John Piper at Desiring God
- Matthew with Douglas Sean O’Donnell on Help Me Teach the Bible with Nancy Guthrie