If you and I know the God who can do above and beyond all that we can imagine, why do we lose sleep at night or waste a day worrying?
We worry, not because of our circumstances but because of who we are—people who don’t fully understand who God is. After all, if we truly believe He can provide for our eternal life through what Jesus did for us on the cross, why don’t we believe He can take care of our everyday life, as well?
In Philippians 4:6-7 we are told, “Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need, and thank him for all he has done. Then you will experience God’s peace, which exceeds anything we can understand. His peace will guard your hearts and minds as you live in Christ Jesus.”
Are you ready to experience God’s peace in place of your panic? If so, here are 10 worries you can get rid of now:
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1. Stop worrying that the worst will happen.
Ephesians 3:20 tells us God is “able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us.” So, if God is capable of beyond the best, why do we often worry about the very worst? Scripture says, “Faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen” (Hebrews 11:1). That means anticipating the best from God, not expecting the worst.
When you and I truly trust God and His character, we will believe His is good, He is loving, and He is so much wiser than we are. Then, when He allows something we don’t understand, we can rest, knowing He is able to work all things for good to those who love Him and are called according to His purpose (Romans 8:28), rather than worrying that He got it wrong.
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2. Stop worrying that you're missing out.
Are you worried you’ll never marry, you’ll never have a child, you’ll never get your dream job, or you’ll never make a difference in this world? Psalm 84:11 says “No good thing will He withhold from those who walk uprightly.” If you are walking uprightly and honoring God, you never need to worry that He will withhold something truly good for you.
If you are walking uprightly and it still seems like God is withholding something you’re asking for, then that something either isn’t truly good for you, or it just isn’t the right time. Trust God with what you don’t know and what you don’t have. Sometimes His “no” is for your protection. And sometimes His “no” is not really a “no” after all; it’s a “not yet—I have something far better that you haven’t even thought to ask for.”
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3. Stop worrying about your health—or someone else’s.
If you know the Great Physician, you never need to worry that you suffer with a condition that no doctor understands or can treat. Nothing takes God by surprise, and that includes whatever ails your body. No condition is out of God’s league. And you can take comfort knowing that nothing touches you that hasn’t first passed through His loving hands.
Just because a health condition hasn’t gone away doesn’t mean God isn’t aware of it. Just because doctors are stumped about your diagnosis doesn’t mean God is in the dark about it. Trust that, as Psalm 139 says, He knows every detail of what is going on in your body—and in the bodies of those you love— and He can handle it.
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4. Stop worrying about your safety.
We can invest in the safest cars on the road, install a top-of-the-line security system in our homes, and take all the necessary precautions to protect ourselves and those we love, but ultimately, God is the one who protects us and keeps us safe.
David sang in Psalm 4:8: “I will lie down and sleep in peace, for you alone, O LORD, make me dwell in safety” (emphasis added). And in Psalm 121:2-3, we are told, “My help comes from the LORD, the Maker of heaven and earth. He will not let your foot slip—he who watches over you will not slumber....”
You can only do so much to keep yourself safe and the rest is in God’s hands. Trust those loving capable hands, rather than insult Him by worrying.
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5. Stop worrying that God won’t provide.
If God can control the vast complexities of the universe, He can control the circumstances and events in our lives to provide us with what we need. Jesus, Himself, said: “…do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink or about your body, what you will wear….Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they?” (Matthew 6:25-26). That sounds like a pretty clear “Don’t worry about it” statement from the Son of God. In other words, “You have a God who is in control, so don’t feel like you have to be!”
Scripture also promises that if you faithfully honor God with the first of what you have, you never need to worry that He won’t provide for you, financially, and otherwise (Malachi 3:10-13). God promises in His Word to supply all our needs according to His riches in Christ Jesus (Philippians 4:19). Take God at His word and trust that He takes care of His children.
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6. Stop worrying about your reputation.
Have you ever lost sleep wondering how you will respond to an unfair situation that calls your integrity into question? Have you worried about your defense, or how to clear up a misunderstanding, or how to silence the false allegations that are circulating about you?
If you, like David, “walk within [your] house in the integrity of [your] heart, and set no worthless thing before [your] eyes” (Psalm 101:2-3), you never have to worry about your reputation. God’s got your back.
Take comfort in knowing it isn’t your job to clear your name—it’s God’s.
Isaiah 54:17 says ‘“no weapon forged against you will prevail, and you will refute every tongue that accuses you. This is the heritage of the servants of the Lord, and this is their vindication from me,’ declares the Lord.”
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7. Stop worrying that you’ll be wiped out financially.
I know many believers who are worried sick when the stock market takes a downturn, when the real estate market plunges, when a lawsuit is threatened, or the unexpected leaves them suddenly in debt.
If you are investing in eternal things, you never have to worry that you will be robbed, ripped off, or wiped out financially (Matthew 6:20). God can take great care of all that you give to Him.
The Proverbs are full of guidelines on how to invest wisely, handle our money appropriately, and protect ourselves when it comes to ‘get-rich-quick’ schemes or unwise financial partnerships.
Be a student of God’s Word, obey Him, and stop worrying that ‘chance’ or ‘the odds’ or ‘the market’ will ruin you. What kind of God do you have if His hands are tied to external circumstances.
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8. Stop worrying that God can’t handle it.
We worry when we feel God has checked out or is incapable of handling what concerns us. Yet, Proverbs 16:3 advises: “Commit your works to the Lord and your plans will be established.” That means once we commit it to God, we can trust the results with Him rather than fearing we will be short-changed, cheated, or destined for failure.
God’s Word promises not only that your plans will succeed when they are committed to Him, but also that God is incapable of making a mistake. Psalm 18:30 says “As for God, his way is perfect: The Lord’s word is flawless; he shields all who take refuge in him.” That means He is perfectly capable of handling all that concerns you and He makes no mistakes.
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9. Stop worrying that God isn’t good.
We don’t consciously worry that God isn’t good, but worrying itself says to God and everyone around us that God doesn’t have our best in mind, doesn’t care about us, and can’t handle what concerns us.
Let 1 John 4:18 reassure you: “There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear, because fear has to do with punishment. The one who fears is not made perfect in love.” When you love God perfectly, you will trust Him immensely. And where there is absolute trust there is no room for fear, worry, or doubt.
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10. Stop trying to control what only God can.
How much time do you and I waste worrying about what we have absolutely no control over? God can control everything we think we must and all that we know we can’t. So, when we wring our hands with worry and fret, we are saying to God “I don’t think You have a handle on this.”
Scripture makes it clear there are only two things you and I can control: our attitudes and our actions.
So, control your mind and thoughts by focusing on what is true—not on what might happen (Philippians 4:8). Control your actions by being quick to hear, slow to speak, and slow to anger (James 1:19). And control your speech by saying only words that build others up (Ephesians 4:29).
Defer to God on the rest and you’ll experience what it means to be a prayer warrior instead of a panicked worrier.
Cindi McMenamin is a pastor’s wife, mother, and national speaker with more than 30 years experience helping women and couples know God more intimately. She is the author of 16 books, including the best-selling When Women Walk Alone (more than 130,000 copies sold), When Couples Walk Together (co-authored with her husband, Hugh), When God Sees Your Tears, Women on the Edge, and 10 Secrets to Becoming a Worry-Free Mom. For more on her speaking ministry, books, or free articles to strengthen your soul, marriage, or parenting, see her website www.StrengthForTheSoul.com.
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Originally published Friday, 24 May 2019.