‘Be anxious for nothing’
By David Malcom
For most of us it’s not difficult to find a reason to get worked up and frustrated. It doesn’t matter what stage of life you are in, exterior forces seem to work diligently to try and influence our perspective.
The media seems to be extraordinarily skilled at baiting their hooks with immanent and looming danger, new exposed truth that should cause concern for the otherwise uninformed individual.
Even entertainment based television uses this type of promotion, advising us, “Don’t miss what happens next,” working us up to one climactic point after another between commercial breaks.
Social media is no different, “friends” each with their own individual perspective, pushing the voices of those who align with their agenda, relentlessly packing our minds with the idea that things are much worse than anyone would lead on. Even many pulpits are filled with theological fear-mongering.
All of this on top of our own individual concerns. So what do we do? Pull the covers over our head and hide?
I had a conversation with one of my daughters a couple of weeks ago. We were riding in the car and she made a joke that was pretty profound.
The joke was “people always fight over whether the glass is half empty or half full. I think we should be thankful we have something to drink.” Proverbs from a 10 year old. This started me thinking about the depth of her statement, and the power of perspective, and eventually this passage.
In our home we encourage our girls to dream, to believe God for the impossible, and to see every situation full of possibility to see God glorified.
Anxious is defined as fear due to the uncertainty of the outcome. Scripture tells us that this sort of fear is actually an invitation to prayer, that we as believers don’t live with uncertainty.
As a matter of fact we serve the God who sees the beginning from the end. He stands now victoriously awaiting the unfolding of all things.
Philippians says that the antidote for the the sort of trepidation is three-fold.
First, to pray, to communicate with the God of peace. The truth is it is very difficult to pray about a situation and not be immediately overtaken with the fact that God sees things differently than we do, and that His over imposing plan for the restoration of all things is the glorious place from which He views all of His creation.
If we truly seek the council of God in any situation our fears and apprehension are confronted.
Secondly, supplication, that is we make our desires for Him to intervene, humbly known to Him. Scripture is full of the power of prayer.
Testimony after testimony of God imploring the prayers of His people. Moses prayed and an entire people was spared, Daniel prayed and an entire nation was changed, Joshua prayed and the sun stood still, and victory was given. We are told that instead of letting fear fester we are given the privilege to take up arms in prayer. The people of God are called not be complainers but contenders. Petitioners not just parishioners.
Finally, to give thanks. To do all of these things thanking God that He is the only one who can do anything about the world, and that He is willing. He gave His son for the whole world. He cares about the whole world. He is involved and we are thankful.
God is not finished we don’t have to fear. The Bible says all things work together for good to those who love God and are the called according to His purpose. If it’s not good, God’s not done, hold on. Don’t let fear creep in.
After we have done all this: rejecting anxiety, praying, petitioning, and thanking. Then we find that we have peace that we don’t have any rationale for. This is the antidote for the noise that surrounds us. Trust God. He’s in control.
David Malcom is the pastor of Trinity Gospel Church. He can be contacted at email@example.com.