If you have been in the church for some time, you are likely to have heard that there are over 300 verses that say, “do not worry,” or “do not be afraid,” in some form. It’s repeated throughout the Old Testament, especially when the Israelites are about to do battle or take a step that required much faith. Joshua 1:7-9 is one of the most notable, as God is speaking to Joshua before he leads the Israelites into the Promised Land:
Have I not commanded you? Be strong and of good courage; do not be afraid, nor be dismayed, for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.Joshua 1:7-9, NKJV
The thread is continued in the New Testament, often in far more mundane circumstances. In the Sermon on the Mount, Jesus commanded his followers:
Therefore I say to you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink; nor about your body, what you will put on. Is not life more than food and the body more than clothing? Look at the birds of the air, for they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns; yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they? Which of you by worrying can add one cubit to his stature?Matt. 6:25-27, NKJV
Why, then, is this one of the most difficult commandments for us to follow? Why are we plagued by worry, fear, discouragement? In his sermon on September 8th, Jurie touched on something that many of us do not understand… not about fear, but about humility. If being humbled before God is having an accurate perception of who you are in the Lord, then suddenly another passage about anxiety makes a great deal of sense:
Humble yourselves, therefore, under God’s mighty hand, that he may lift you up in due time. Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you.1 Peter 5:6-7, NIV
You see, a sense of inferiority tells us, “My concerns aren’t worthy of God’s attention,” or, “I’m not worthy of God’s attention.” A sense of pride tells us, “I’ve got this,” or “I don’t need God’s help.” Only in a state of humility can we say, “Father, I cast all my fears, anxieties, hopes, and dreams on You. Carry me through both tough times and times of joy. I know You love me and will work all things for my good.”
Take a moment to meditate on who God says you are – His child. Then out of that place of humility, cast all your anxiety on Him. He really does care for you.
Whenever I am afraid, I will trust in You.Psalms 56:3, NKJV
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