Is Philippians 4:6 one of your favorite verses? It is one of mine. Let’s talk about that verse in connection with fighting worry. It says, “Be anxious for nothing, but in everythingby prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God” (NASB italics added). What impresses me the most when I read that verse is how it stresses the words “nothing…everything.” Absolutely nothing need be worried about and absolutely everything can be brought to God in prayer!
But my natural reaction when I don’t have control is to think, Now this deserves to be worried about! Be honest! Haven’t you thought that too? There are just some things that even if God is powerful enough, even if God cares enough, even if God loves me enough, there are just some things that are worthy to be worried about!
Unfortunately, Satan’s lie says, “God helps those who help themselves.” In my childhood, I got the impression that I should take care of the little worries and let God take care of the big ones. After all, there was so much that God had on His mind, why bother Him about the things that I could handle? Except that I didn’t handle even the little worries very well but I still felt I should keep them on my plate.
Philippians 4:6 clears away this lie. God wants us to take everything to Him, every little and big thing. No exceptions! But there’s a strange satisfaction that encourages us to keep them close at hand. It’s this: worrying feels good! Worrying makes me feel like I am the center of the universe. It’s a very selfish, self-centered occupation. After all, when I’m worried I’m wondering what is going to happen to me. And when I worry about you, then I’m wondering what is going to happen to you that will affect me.
By the way, have you ever tried to worry and trust at the same time? It’s really hard to do! If we choose to pray, thus turning our attention to the Lord, worry can’t inhabit our thoughts as easily. That word, “choose,” is crucial. Praying is a choice! It is a conscious decision to turn our minds from worry onto God’s abilities to deliver us, help us, or guide us. It’s a hard choice because we can easily believe lies like “worry feels good,” “it works” or “it is necessary.” But by making the choice to turn our minds to trusting God, we will find it easier and easier to do.
Just don’t believe the lie that someone once told me: “Of course, worry works. What I worry about doesn’t happen!”