The Desires of Our Heart
“Don’t’ worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need, and thank Him for all He has done. If you do this, you will experience God’s peace.” Philippians 4:6-7a (NLT)
Want to do something to really interrupt your connection with God? Try worrying. Want to waste time, energy and resources on something that will never improve your life, or result in anything good for the Kingdom? That’s right – worry, again. If we were to compare the time spend worrying with, say, the time we spend listening to Scripture and giving our cares and concerns to God, I’m sure we’d be shocked at the disparity.
Worry is one of those secondary sins that eats away at our peace. By secondary, I mean that worry usually comes about as a result of one or more other sins we commit – disobedience, independence, pride, and the like. We worry because we can’t control something. We worry because there is something going on around us that is totally beyond our ability to affect. Unfortunately, we also worry because we don’t stop to realize that whatever we’re worrying about was never our problem to solve in the first place.
It’s not easy to stop worrying about the often scary, everyday parts of our lives, but God tells us how in His Word, “Pray about everything . . . and thank Him for what He has done.” Do you want to experience God’s peace? When you start to worry, try praying in a spirit of gratefulness to God for everything He has done in your life. Just stopping to realize all of the big and little things that He has done for you – starting with the breath and heartbeat He gave you to get up this morning – will enable you to see the futility of your worry in light of the power of God to handle your problems.
We’re told more than 20 times in the New Testament to “ask” God for what we need or want. But, recognizing what He’s done in our lives, day in and day out, we should approach this dialogue in a spirit of praise and gratitude. Is that how we’re praying – with gratefulness? Or, do we treat thanking God for “His many blessings” just the perfunctory part of the prayer that we have to move through to get down to the meat – the long list of what we want? Try praying with praise – the Bible says that God inhabits the praise of His people. He can and will use our thanksgiving as an instrument of power in our lives. Try leaving your worries at God’s throne and praying, in joy and anticipation, that He will take these cares from your shoulders and bear them Himself. Just try – and see what God will do in your life!