Chapter Fifteen - Worry In Weary Out
The Gospel is broad in scope, and it includes everything from salvation of a soul, to and through our living, to heaven. To write of the Gospel means that we must, as a necessity, from time to time, dwell upon these things, little things, that are in the middle, so to speak, between our salvation and our entrance into heaven.
So this chapter, "Worry In and Weary Out,' is, as I see it, part of the Gospel. It is something that affects our being, and this in turn affects our relationship with God. What concerns us, in this respect, is part of our being and living the Gospel. Worry is sins It is a disease of the soul. When you worry, you are in effect saying,, "Goodbye," to your faith; "Goodbye,' to your trust in a living God.
There are two days of the week upon which and about which I never worry (so this article t read said). These are two carefree days. I'm not bothered about these days, as far as anxiety is concerned, in my Christian living. One of these days is yesterday, with all of its cares, with all of its frets, with all of its aches and pains. Yesterday. It is gone. There is absolutely nothing I can do about yesterday. And, think of the mistakes I made yesterday, the blunders I made, the things that I said that I shouldn't have said, the things I didn't do that I should have done! All of these things are yesterday. They're God's At midnight we came into a new days So I try not to worry about yesterday because there is nothing I can do about yesterday. I can worry myself "grayer" than I am, and it will not help yesterday.
The other day that I try not to worry about is tomorrow. Because, you know why? Tomorrow is not even mine yet. Its God's. And, my dear saint, tomorrow is away from your grasp. You can plan for it; you can prepare for it; and you rightly should do so. But don't worry about tomorrow because there is nothing you can do about tomorrow.
Now, What day is left? If that takes care of the two days I don't have to worry about, this leaves only one day. And what day is that? This is a very important day because it's 'the day God has made. And the Scripture says, "Let us rejoice in it, and not worry about it." Yet we do this. Tomorrow with its dangers, with its perils, with its promises, with its challenges, with its responsibilities are all far beyond my roach. Then it will be my day. But right now, it is not my day.
Today is my day. So I feel that the most adequate way we can face today is to read these words in Philippians 4:6-7. This chapter is designed to help you live victoriously. I think that in our Scripture we find two sentences that are fabulous.
"Don't worry about anything." Now, if you're reading from the King James version, you won't find the word, "Worry,' there. Because the word, "Worry," is not even in the King James Bible, and rightly so. But the new translations have put in words with which we are more familiar. And the word, "worry,' has shown up here. It says, "Don't worry about anything, but in all your prayers ask God for what you need. Always asking him with a thankful heart. And Gods peace, which is far beyond human understanding, will keep your heart and mind safe in Christ Jesus."
Now, between verses 6 and 7 there is a period in my Bible. There is a period in your Bible, too, regardless of the translation you are using. But in the original Greek, periods and commas and capital letters and question marks were not even used. It was just word after word. So, if you remove the period after verse 6 and put in a comma; and if you reduce the capital "A" to a lower-case a, you'll find, "Don't worry about anything but in all your prayers ask God for what you need, always asking Him with a thankful heart, and God's peace which is far beyond human understanding will keep your heart and mind safe."
Individuals want peace. Are you worried about your business? Are you worried about your homo? Are you worried about that test? Are you worried about this and chat? The Bible tells us that a Christian can be worry-free, if he or she desires to be. But, now none of us is going to be worry-free, because we are all Sinful people. And we will commit the sin of worrying, and this is one of the things that rob Christians.
Mr. Worry comes and snatches you, arid he robs you of the peace, of the joy, of the happiness you could have. i.r. Worry likes to do this. He wants you to stumble as a Christian. I once read these words, "Died of worry" could be etched on many tombstones.
Again I've read, "I've joined the new 'Don't Worry' Club, and now I hold my breath. I'm so afraid I'll worry that I'm worried half to death. ' Worry is all around us. Are you wiggling your feet now? It's a nervous mannerism. All kinds of nervous mannerisms are in our society. These things are the things that distract us from being the ideal Christian.
Franklin Roosevelt said, "The only thing we have to worry about is worry itself. The only thing we have to fear is fear itself.' Now prayer is an acknowledgment of faith, and worry is a denial of faith. And so, when we face "our existence," we are accepting from God; when we worry, we are denying our faith. Many people make life unnecessarily difficult for themselves by spending all their energy and all their power worrying and fretting. Now, you say, "What does this have to do with the Gospel?" Jesus came into the world to set men free from the things that keep them bogged down. Salvation is not only accepting and believing, but there is a lot that Jesus wants to save you from, from the point of your salvation to the point of your death. 11e wants to save you continuously from these many things.
Salvation is primary, but there are other items in our growth. When we fume and fret. Do you ever fume and fret? When was the last time you fumed and fretted? We fume and fret, don't we? The Bible clearly says, "Fret not thyself." And if we do something that the Bible tells us not to do, then this is sin; it is wrong. Now the Bible's Sound advice in Psalm 37:1 is, "Fret not thyself."
We are unusual people. As buy expensive beds; we buy eight-inch springs; we buy ten-inch innersprings, we cover all this with a foam covering on our mattresses; and then we lie awake all night long, worrying about things. Many things are yesterday's problems and tomorrow's perplexities.
I would like to suggest several things to you.
In Philippians, Chapter 4, it says, "The peace of God." If we are in right relationship with God, we are going to have a peace about us. We may not always go around smiling, but we will have a special peace about us. John 14:27 records it this way: "Peace I leave with you, My own peace I give you. I do not give it to you as the world does," because there is a difference between God's peace and man's peace. 13ut do not be worried and upset; do not be afraid." These are from Gods Son's lips, and they are in the Bible. It says right here, "Do not worry and get upset; do not be afraid." This is the peace of God.
In our text, particular reference is made to that which is expressed when we have anxious care about the supply of our wants, and when we go confidently and when we commit everything into the hands of God. Our sufficiency is from God. In our daughter, Robyn's, bedroom, there is a little plaque. It reads this way:
"Said the Robin to the Sparrow, 'I would really like to know Why these anxious human beings Rush around and worry so."
"Said the Sparrow to the Robin: 'Friend, I think that it must be They don't have a heavenly Father, Such as cares for you and me."
The peace of God is witnessed to by us in many ways - the setting of the sun fishing on a still lake under the trees--an evening drive in the country--or listening to some music. There re many ways whereby God gives you His peace. But, my friends, He wants to give you this day or night some peace you have never back be fore, regardless of your age, regardless of your status in the Church and community. He wants to give you something that you have never had before to a great degree, and that is some peace. This is the peace of God; it is not religion. It is the peace of Cod Chat passes all understanding. Secondly, the Scripture says, "which passes all understanding." In the Good News for Modern Man, it says, "which is far beyond human understanding." This seems to be the highest possible peace that can be given to you.
Now the Christian has committed himself to God. He has committed his way to God, and there is a feeling around a Christian that he is going to know that God is going to allow everything to be all right. There is a peace. now, nothing can furnish this peace except religion, but, yet it is selfish, not religious.
Robert Barnes said that, "No confidence that a man can have in his own power, no reliance which he can repose on his own plan or on the promise or fidelity of his fellow man, no calculation he can make on the course of events can impart peace, as Simple confidence in God." Do you have confidence in God now? Do you know He has confidence in you? Isaiah 26:3, 4 says, "He will keep you in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on Thee because He trusts in Thee." I like this Sentence. It is one of my favorite sentences in all the Bible. He will keep me in perfect peace if my mind is stayed upon 1-hm. It can be yours, too. It is beyond our comprehension. But we know that we can accept this peace that will pass all understanding.
Now the third thing is this: "Shall keep your hearts and minds "--the idea of a garrison, the idea of a fort being erected. The Scripture says that God is going to set your hearts and minds and is going to keep you. You're not holding onto God this morning, for, if you are, you might slip and let loose. God is holding onto you. With your confidence in God, you can go with God. The peace of God which passes all understanding shall keep your heart. Now this is what I want you to keep with you: "Shall keep your heart." This is a military term. Your heart is as if it were guarded--guarded by Almighty God.
Your soul has been guarded through all the experiences of your living, defending it from all eternal things of an adverse nature. But, nevertheless, we sometimes do not acknowledge this, and when we do not acknowledge it, we just cut it right off, that is, the confidence that we have in God. But God will keep your heart in perfect peace if your mind is stayed on Him.
I have given this verse to many people who have sat in my study, either across Che desk or side by side on the couch. I have Cold them this verse of Scripture more than any other Scripture in the Bible. "Thou will keep him in perfect peace whose mind is stayed on him." If you ant peace this week in your home or business or in your school, you keep your mind on God.
Let me tell you an experience a minister had, A man came in to him and said, "My life is a mess." 11e said, "My wife keeps saying I should come to you. So here I am, help me."
Well, there is more to it than just that, but this man made several trips back to the minister. The minister gave him several prescriptions, one of which was the verse I just gave you. Keep your heart and mind on Jesus. Keep your "mind stayed on Him.
This man worried so much it Was unbelievable. For instance, when he woke up in the morning, he was so busy, so much in a hurry to get to his work, he would have a soft-boiled egg so it would slide down quicker. And he had to get in the car so he could get madly on the freeway and get to work and madly get involved in his appointments and his business empire. 11e would madly get back into his car, and madly come home so he could madly take a shower, madly eat so he could madly be fully exhausted and go to bed and wake up the next morning - the same thing - a vicious circle.
It may be your circle, too. Not that a life can be perfect, but here was a rushed life. "Be still and know that I am Cod," he was told. One day he woke up in the morning earlier than usual, and he noticed a little bird on the window of the second story home. 11e saw Chis little bird sleeping. The little bird woke up, looked around, as birds do, and then, all of a sudden, tucked his head back under his wing and went back to sleep. The man watched this bird very intently, as if Cod had sent that bird to him. God does not always use traditional things. God pea.k in many ways. When the bird woke up again, he looked around and started stretching, one leg out this way, then he stretched a wing out that way. Then the little bird put his head back under his wing again for a "bird nap."
The third time he woke up he started singing, and then jumped down on the ground, looking for worms. Now, the man thou3ht, if a bird can do that, why can't I do that? The next morning he set his alarm ten minutes earlier and woke up earlier so he could go back to sleep. 11e lay back down in bed, and rested and prayed. Then he sat up on the bed and started singing. He couldn't sing. His wife knew he couldn't sing, but he sang, and this released some tension that had been building up in him. The clock was set early enough so that he went to the breakfast table and had a normal break fast--whatever that is.
Then he went to work. He admitted he had to keep on a little piece of paper in his desk drawer this verse of Scripture. "Thou shalt keep him in perfect peace whose mind is stayed on Thee." it was the hope of his salvation. His mind changed. Longer did he worry as much. He had learned to release some tension.
If I may chase one rabbit, psychologists tell us that this is very good. Many people are worried today, and they can release some tension by burning notes on paper. e had an urn_burning service one Sunday. One lady said, "I was just building up so much tension, and I just burned up everything on my piece of paper. I went away feeling good." This Is therapy. It's good therapy. Throw a dish - but not at anybody, break a glass, break something. it is therapy. And it has a place in the Christian ministry today.
But this man released some tension of worry. And, as a result of this, he became a better Christian. Now this is part of the Gospel. Why is it part of the Gospel? Matthew 5:16 tells us very carefully these words, about fasting and also about the life that we have from God. God has given us a life, and we are to use the life. — But when we do not use our life properly, this results in our light's not shining. And when we worry, we are putting a filter over our light. 11e tells us in Matthew 5, "You are the light of the whole world." You are. But if you worry, you put a filter over your light. And you know what a filter over a light does.
Fourth and finally, "Safe in Jesus Christ." May I repeat what I said? The Scripture tells US that Jesus is going to keep us. It is through Jesus, and we must never lose sight of this, that we can be worry-free, because of Jesus. "God's peace," far beyond human understanding, will keep your heart through Christ Jesus. lie is the great Physician. We must never lose sight of this.
In conclusion, there are two kinds of peace that are available. There is the peace of the world, which can be had to deliver you from tribulationS. But there is the peace of God which delivers you from yourself. The world peace is man-made; religious peace is God-given. Matthew tells us that we are to bring all of our cares and all our burdens and perplexities to God, and He will take them, and He will use them.
I wonder, Mom and Dad, young person, what is your big worry now? What Is your hang-up now. Maybe nobody else knows about it, maybe you think nobody cares. I would submit unto you at this hour that Jesus is real, and He cares for you and your problems. He wants to help you, and 11e says, "Come unto 'Me, all of you who are weary and tired and frustrated, and I will give you rest. These are the words of Jesus. Will you accept them now?
If you are lonely, you don't have to be lonely, with Jesus standing by. His presence always cheers me, I know that lie is nigh. Are you friendless this morning? No. Not friendless since Jesus is my friend. I change, but He remains true, faithful to the end. ¿re you saddened? No, not saddened. I should be if I knew not that Jesus loves me so. Tired, no not tired. While leaning on his breast, my soul has full enjoyment of His eternal rest. Why worry when you can pray.
Our Father, we want to be more like You. We want not to do things that sever relationships. We do not want to do things that cause us to be astray from You. And we know that when we worry that we are really just putting a filter over our light. We are saying, "Goodbye to faith; "Hello" to fear. And so bless, we pray, our Father, each reading these lines, that we may know that You love us, that we may know that our sufficiency is from God, and that we might know, as never before, that tie have a place to love You. May we truly release these things that bother us. We pray that this one will feel Jesus right here with His arms wide open, Saying, "Come." Amen.
Dr. L. Neal Carlson
King City, California
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