Things happen. That’s a simple, if understated, fact. What goes with it is that, most of the time, those things are out of our control. How we handle those events is what defines who we are, how others see us, and how we manage life.
Life isn’t always grande and jolly. For most of us, stress is a constant companion, nervousness following like a hungry dog. We worry about tomorrow, about our families, our jobs, our entertainment. Oh the unbridled woe of a lost Internet connection! In all seriousness, we worry about much. Ultimately though, where does it get us? Did you know that your body responds to anxiety just as it would a physical threat, flooding the tissues with stress hormones, increasing heartrate and breathing, and generally making you far more miserable than you need be? It’s true.
I’m just as guilty as the next person; I worry too. I find myself sinking into anxiety far more often than I should ever allow, and it is at those moments that I have to remind myself of a simple but profound truth: as a believer, I belong to Christ, and by Him all shall be as it must. Fear, anxiety, dread, desire, nervousness, every single one of these things is sin, and we as believers must strive to rise above it just like we do with all other sin.
Philippians 4:6 instructs us to “Be careful for nothing; but in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God.” That “be careful” here in other translations is better translated today as don’t worry. Don’t worry, believer! Trust Christ!
Psalm 18:2 says, “The LORD is my rock, and my fortress, and my deliverer; my God, my strength, in whom I will trust; my buckler, and the horn of my salvation, and my high tower.” He is our Rock, and that Rock is our perfect foundation, our high ground as the waters rise, our anchor when the winds of opposition blow. When we trust in Him, putting our faith in the knowledge that when the storm comes, not if but when, He is there in it with us, carrying us towards calmer skies. In Him alone is true peace found, but only when we trust Him enough to experience it.
“Have not I commanded thee? Be strong and of a good courage; be not afraid, neither be thou dismayed: for the Lord thy God is with thee whithersoever thou goest. (Joshua 1:9)”
Years ago, long before I ever gained my faith in God, I memorized one of my Grandmother’s favorite Chapters of the Bible. I was very proud then of my ability to recite the thing word for word, but it wasn’t until I truly gave my life to Christ that I finally realized the depth of comfort expressed in these six little verses. Now, when things start looking a little dim, I find myself recalling that passage with thanks and hope, knowing that He is there no matter what lay ahead.
“The LORD is my shepherd; I shall not want. He maketh me to lie down in green pastures: he leadeth me beside the still waters. He restoreth my soul: he leadeth me in the paths of righteousness for his name’s sake. Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for thou art with me; thy rod and thy staff they comfort me. Thou preparest a table before me in the presence of mine enemies: thou anointest my head with oil; my cup runneth over. Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life: and I will dwell in the house of the LORD for ever.”
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