4 Rejoice in the Lord always; again I will say, rejoice. 5 Let your reasonableness be known to everyone. The Lord is at hand;
6 do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God.7 And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. - Philippians 4:4-7
Do not be anxious about anything - I love the totality of that statement. It’s not a suggestion for how we should live, or vague in any way. It’s a command - do not be anxious for anything. I’ll never forget hearing those words taught at a Woman of Faith conference years ago. The woman was teaching from the NASB version - be anxious for nothing, and she kept emphasizing nothing is NO-thing. We are to be anxious for NO-thing. The way she read this passage has always stuck in head, I often hear her voice yelling at me when I start to get anxious. The point is we are not to be anxious about anything at all - not our kids, not our finances, not our jobs, not our families, not our health. No-thing.
Let’s be clear about what anxiety is - it’s that feeling of worry, nervousness, or unease, typically about something with an uncertain outcome. Anxiety doesn’t come from just thinking about the future, it comes from wanting to control the future. It doesn’t acknowledge that God is sovereign over our life. If we only learned to cast all our anxieties on Him and trust In His plan, we would have so much more peace. I’ve always loved Paul Tripp’s quote about anxiety, “Honestly facing your lack of sovereignty over your own life produces either anxiety or relief. Anxiety is God-forgetting. It is the result of thinking that life is on your shoulders, that it is your job to figure it all out and keep things in order.”
If we truly believe that God is enough, then would we feel any anxiety at all? Of course not. So when we do feel anxiety, it's an indication that part of our heart believes a lie. Sometimes, it's hard to figure out what those lies are – because in our heads, and the heads of believers like ourselves, we know the truth. Our job is to figure out where the disconnect is between our heads and our hearts. So our task is to think about the lies that we do believe and replacing them with truth we know from Scripture. Then, we need to meditate on those truths throughout the day to replace the lies that have been living in our hearts
We must remember that we are given grace for today and today alone. When anxiety grips us, it’s because we are looking into a future that does not exist yet. We fear what may happen, but we have only been given the grace we need to face today’s troubles – we have not yet received the grace we will need tomorrow…so, of course it seems overwhelming to worry about the “what if’s”. When we’re feeling anxious, we’re busy trying to manage future problems on today’s grace. That’s impossible. As Pastor James has said, don’t borrow trouble from tomorrow.
He’s going to be there tomorrow if we need Him. He promises, so we have not reason to fear. Isaiah 43:2-3, “When you go through deep waters and great trouble, I will be with you. When you go through the rivers of difficulty, you will not drown! When you walk through the fire of oppression, you will not be burned up – the flames will not consume you. For I am the Lord your God, your Savior, the Holy One of Israel.
Corrie Ten Boom, when speaking of God’s grace, said “you only need the ticket for the train today, not an advanced ticket for tomorrow…God gives you only enough grace for today, not ‘advanced grace’ for tomorrow. That will be there for me, in plenty, when tomorrow comes”
I’ve worked hard to live this truth out in my life, and it’s had an enormous impact on my anxiety level over the years. I have been so thankful that this is a lesson He has not only taught me, but sealed to my heart before this diagnosis. It would be so easy to fill with fear over my future, but I have remained surprisingly at peace throughout this season. I know He has a plan, and I trust it is for good - whatever it is. I try not to spend too much time thinking about tomorrow because I know He promises to be there with me to face whatever may come. There is such peace for me in that truth.
Press on ~ you are loved 💗
Many of you know I have been trying to raise money to replace the uncomfortable caregiver's chairs in the infusion center at Illinois Cancer Specialists. It is important to me that our caregivers are able to sit comfortably for hours while we receive our chemo treatments ~ we need our caregivers to be at their best so they can care for us at our worst. Please consider donating ~ every little bit helps! Here is the link:
https://www.gofundme.com/chair4caregivers. Thank you so much!!
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