JESUS DOES NOT WANT YOU TO WORRY

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Why Worry if you can pray? If you CAN’T pray, THEN you have something to worry about!

by Dr. Foster H. Shannon

“Have no anxiety about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which passes all understanding, will keep your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.” (Philippians 4:6,7)

What do we worry about?

1. What do other people think of me?

2. Will I be able to pay my bills next month?

3. Do I have an unrecognized disease or ailment?

4. Will I succeed in getting a job?

5. Will we have enough money when I retire?

6. What does God think of me?

The Philippians passage reminds us that we are not to be anxious or worry about anything. It affirms that the remedy is in our prayer life: supplication, thanksgiving, and requests. Prayer is very important for everyone who believes in God. Worry and distress drain our energy. They cause us to concentrate on our problems rather than on the solutions. They cause us to lose focus and to let our imaginations run amuck, so that in our thought processes we seek to solve problems that will never arise. There is something about praying about these concerns that brings us to the assurance that we have not been left alone. If something is on our mind, it is very important that we share it with God.

“Cast all you anxieties on him for he cares about you.” (I Peter 5:7)

Thanksgiving helps us to remember what is good: The love of God, the atoning sacrifice of Jesus Christ, that the destiny of everyone who believes in Jesus Christ is with God for all eternity. That God guides us into much that is good for us: righteousness, justice, compassion, goodness, truth, love for our neighbors. That God is concerned for our needs and will provide for them as we trust in him and seek to serve him.

“Therefore do not be anxious, saying, “What shall we eat? Or What shall we drink? Or what shall we wear?” For the Gentiles seek all these things; and your heavenly Father knows that you need them all. But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things shall be yours as well.” (Matthew 6:31-33)

This scripture passage reminds us that our priorities are important. Some of our difficulties may result because we seek the wrong things. If we believe in Jesus Christ, we commit ourselves wholly to him; we are a part of his family. We trust in him, we enjoy him, we delight to do his will. We know that he is with us and will not fail us! It is true that times of unexpected crisis come, that we find greatly disappointing and even shattering. We should turn to God first, but we must also avail ourselves of friends and family. We should not go it alone!

“For I know the plans I have for you, says the Lord, plans for welfare and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope. Then you will call upon me and come and pray to me, and I will hear you.” (Jeremiah 29:11,12)

Foster H. Shannon
Please contact Foster directly with any questions or comments at the following address:

Thank you.

More about Foster… Foster H. Shannon, Brief Biographical Note Dr. Foster Shannon received his degree from the University of California, Berkeley in Political Science, and went on to obtain a Master of Divinity at Fuller Theological Seminary and a Doctor of Ministry from San Francisco Theological Seminary, with emphasis on church growth. The Interim Pastor of True Light Presbyterian Church in Alhambra, CA until recently, he is the author of seven books and a Sunday School curriculum. As the President of Green Leaf Press, a non-profit Christian publishing company, established in 1981, he publishes and markets Christian books with special emphasis on Bible Study, Church Growth, and Christian Evidences.
The website is: www.gogreenleaf.com.
He enjoys riding his bicycle and swimming weekly. He likes both classical and popular music. He roots for the CAL Bears and the Chicago Cubs.
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DON’T WORRY

By Dr. Foster H. Shannon

Worry

“Have no anxiety about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which passes all understanding, will keep your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.” (Philippians 4:6,7)

Anxiety and worry have to do with a tomorrow, over which we have limited control. We are not sure what will take place in the future regarding our work, our relationships with family and friends, with our health, with our finances. When it comes to tomorrow faith in God is essential. The trouble with worry is that it concerns itself with things that may never happen. Worry is not a small matter. Anxiety and worry drain our strength, our energy, and our hope. Beware of giving yourself over to your worries—they can take possession of you.

Worry is more than concern. It is more than planning for the future. Anxiety is a particular kind of fear—fear of the future. It causes life to be out of balance, and is a continuing sense of disquiet and pain. For most of us—rightful concern, preparation, anticipation—and then worry and anxiety are on a continuum, and it is easy to slide from proper concern to unhealthy worry.

A close relationship with our Savior is the solution to our worries. In Christ one can be right with the world and the future. The believer in God is to fear God rather than man. Jesus said, “Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me; for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your soul.” (Matthew 11:29) It is far easier to respect, serve, and honor God than it is to placate all those persons, situations and inner feelings that appeal for our allegiance. “Therefore do not be anxious about tomorrow, for tomorrow will be anxious for itself. Let the day’s own trouble be sufficient for the day.” (Matthew 6:34)

Believing in God, we trade an insecure future for a secure one. One of the difficulties for many people is that they become confused. They hear one thing one day and so live their lives in one direction—and they hear another thing the next day and try to live their lives in two directions at once. There is great peace in fearing (respecting) God, because in fearing God, we need fear no one else. In prayer God helps us to sift through the various inclinations that tug upon us.

There are things that we can do to make tomorrow alright or even better:

1. Show up for work

2. Don’t live beyond your means (Be disciplined in your financial planning)

3. Maintain a regular exercise regime

4. Don’t overeat or drink

5. Treat other people kindly

6. Above all else—put God first

Finally, We need to focus on and be grateful with what we have:

1. We are created in the image of God. (Genesis 1:26)

2. We are loved by God. (John 3:16)

3. God wants those who trust in him to make the best of life: “I came that they may have life, and have it abundantly.” (John 10:10)

4. In our Lord, we have a future that is beyond compare: “What no eye has seen, nor ear heard, nor the heart of man conceived, God has prepared for those who love him.” (I Corinthians 2:9)

Foster H. Shannon
Please contact Foster directly with any questions or comments at the following address:

Thank you.

More about Foster…

Foster H. Shannon, Brief Biographical Note

Dr. Foster Shannon received his degree from the University of California, Berkeley in Political Science, and went on to obtain a Master of Divinity at Fuller Theological Seminary and a Doctor of Ministry from San Francisco Theological Seminary, with emphasis on church growth.
The Interim Pastor of True Light Presbyterian Church in Alhambra, CA until recently, he is the author of seven books and a Sunday School curriculum. As the President of Green Leaf Press, a non-profit Christian publishing company, established in 1981, he publishes and markets Christian books with special emphasis on Bible Study, Church Growth, and Christian Evidences. The website is: www.gogreenleaf.com. He enjoys riding his bicycle and swimming weekly. He likes both classical and popular music. He roots for the CAL Bears and the Chicago Cubs.

‘LIKE’ our FACEBOOK PAGE!