Monday, April 3, 2017

Pastor's Ponderings, April 3, 2017

Worry or Peace?

William Ralph Inge wrote, “Worry is interest paid on trouble before it comes due.”  Many of us will worry about the past, the present and the future to our own detriment. In the April 2, 2017 edition of Daily Mail, Rosalind Ryan wrote an article entitled, “What worrying does to your health.” She wrote, Worrying can have a negative effect on your health, making you tired, stressed, speed up the ageing process and sometimes more prone to depression. When you worry, your body responds to your anxiety the same way it would react to physical danger.

Notably, the use of drugs for worry has increased. In 2013, Sigal Sharf wrote an article in entitled, Anti-anxiety medication use soars in past decade. She wrote, More than one in five American adults took medications for psychiatric disorders such as anxiety and depression in 2010, according to new research by Medco Health Solutions, Inc.

In the sixties, we worried about nuclear bombs falling and we planned to duck under our desks in the event of an attack. In 2017, the players have changed, but worry about destruction from climate change, environmental devastation, terrorists attacks, fresh cancer scares, and superbugs still abounds. Those who are not experiencing anxiety or worry in their lives should not be smug.  No one knows what future problem may unexpectedly consume us with fear and anxiety. 

Nevertheless, the Bible tells us not to be anxious about anything, but to let God's peace guard our hearts and minds (Philippians 4:6, 7). The Bible goes further and shares the futility of worry inasmuch as we cannot, by worrying, add an hour to our lives (Luke 12:25, 26).  The Bible also says we should not worry about tomorrow; let tomorrow take care of itself.

Our priority should be to seek God’s kingdom and His righteousness and everything that we need will be given to us (Matthew 6:33-34).  This does not mean that we should not make appropriate plans for the future or that we should never take prescribed medications. However, we should make a commitment to “cast our anxiety upon the Lord for He cares for us” (1 Peter 5:7).  Instead of worrying, we can seek the peace of God, which He gives to those who love Him (John 14:27). Let us focus on His peace and let Him take care of any problems that will try to worry us.

Philippians 4:6, 7
New International Version (NIV)
Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.
And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.

Luke 12:25, 26
New International Version (NIV)
25 Who of you by worrying can add a single hour to your life?
26 Since you cannot do this very little thing, why do you worry about the rest?

Matthew 6:33-34
New International Version (NIV)
33 But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well.
34 Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.

1 Peter 5:7
New International Version (NIV)
Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you.

John 14:27
New International Version (NIV)
27 Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.

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