There are so many things to be concerned about these days, aren’t there? Maybe you’re trying to keep up with the bills, but now your car is making a funny noise. Perhaps you’re really unhappy at your job, but you’re not sure about making a change because your student loan bills are looming. If you’re like most, you may feel like many times you’re taking two steps forward and one step back, and you wonder how things will ever get better for you financially, relationally, or spiritually.
It can be easy to worry when things aren’t going our way. In fact, worry can become a bad habit. But in Matthew 6:25-34, Jesus takes 10 verses to explain why we shouldn’t worry. He asked in verse 27, “Can any one of you by worrying add a single hour to your life?” Of course not! This may seem like a silly question, but Jesus was trying to help us understand that worry doesn’t work; it only robs us of today’s joy.
When we worry rather than seek God, it shows that we aren’t trusting Him with our problems. Worrying indicates that we don’t believe God is who He says He is and He’ll do what He says He’ll do. Worry can be a sign that we are doubting God rather than having faith in Him.
In order to fight worry, we have to intentionally tap into the power of prayer. Prayer helps us get our eyes off of our problems and onto the Lord. Prayer gives us a chance to share our feelings, needs, and requests with God; and it helps us remember that God is faithful to see us through. Prayer is important because it reminds us that we can trust God with whatever we’re facing.
Philippians 4:6 tells us, “Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.” Rather than worrying (which changes nothing and only increases our anxiety), we are instructed to pray when we feel anxious and to be thankful as we tell God what we need. Prayer is powerful: “The prayer of a righteous person is powerful and effective” (James 5:16b). In fact, when we put our hands up in prayer to God and keep our eyes on Him, our worries come down and have no hold on us.
So put your hands up and watch your worries come down!