Chapter 9 :: When You Are Worried...Pray!
The way to worry about nothing
is to pray about everything.
God commands, "Do Not Worry!"
Did you know that over 300 times in the New Testament God commands us, "Do not worry" or "Be not anxious"? Just one of these occurrences, which we considered earlier, is Philippians 4:6-7:
Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer
and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests
be made know to God; and the peace of God,
which surpasses all understanding, will guard your
hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.
The Command- "Be anxious for nothing"
The Scope of the Command- "Be anxious for nothing" I once heard a Bible teacher ask, "Do you know what 'nothing' is? It's a zero with the rim kicked off!"
The Solution- Prayer! "Let your requests be made known to God."
By Prayer- Prayer is not only worship but prayer is where all true worship begins... and all worry ends!
By Supplication- Do you have a need (Or, more accurately asked, Do you think you have a need?) Then pray! Petition God by supplication. Boldly go before His throne of grace in your times of need...
and with your needs (Hebrews 4:16).
and with your needs (Hebrews 4:16).
We can ask and not worry... or we can worry because we don't ask. It's one or the other--and the choice is ours.
With Thanksgiving- Praise, gratitude, and thanksgiving accompany all true prayer.
By Requests- Present your requests to God with utmost confidence. Keep nothing back, neither great nor small. Withhold nothing--none of your concerns--from God. He wants your everything, your every concern! So present them to Him. Leave them in the lap of the Almighty.
The Result-- When you and I are obedient to God's command to not worry, and when we're faithful to pray instead, and the peace of God comes to our rescue and "will guard [our] hearts and minds through Christ Jesus." In other words, as a tribal missionary so beautifully and simply translated this truth, Jesus will make your heart sit down.
And once your heart sits down, peace keeps watch over it. Like a soldier, God's peace guards your heart--and mind!--against anxiety, doubt, fear, worry, and distress. And the result? The battle against worry is won!
Checklist for Prayer
- Don't...miss a day of prayer-- If you play hit-and-miss with your daily prayer time, you will most certainly discover that your worry level is higher on the days when you don't pray. Prayer is God's surefire solution for elimination worry. If you pray, then you won't be anxious. If you pray, then you will experience peace of mind. And the opposite is true, too. If you don't pray, then you will be anxious. If you don't pray, then you will not experience peace of mind.
- Do... memorize Psalm 23
Psalm 231The LORD is my shepherd; I shall not want.
2He makes me lie down in green pastures.
He leads me beside still waters.
3He restores my soul.
He leads me in paths of righteousness
for his name’s sake.4Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death,
I will fear no evil,
for you are with me;
your rod and your staff,
they comfort me.5You prepare a table before me
in the presence of my enemies;
you anoint my head with oil;
my cup overflows.
6Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me
all the days of my life,
and I shall dwell in the house of the LORD
- Do... determine a "worry day"-- A man who was unable to put his troubles aside completely decided that the next best thing to do would be to set apart a single day, Wednesday, to do all his worrying. When something came up that disturbed him during the week, he wrote it down and put it in what he called his "Wednesday Worry Box." When the time came to review his high-anxiety problems, he found to his great surprise that most of them had already been settled and no longer generated anxiety! He discovered that most worry is unnecessary and a waste of precious energy.
"The riches of His grace" (Ephesians 1:7)
an inexhaustible reservoir to draw from.
"The riches of his glory" (Ephesians 3:16)
an inestimable wealth to count on.
"The riches of His goodness" (Romans 2:4)
an unfailing resource to rely on.