The Bible admonishes us not to worry, so I often wonder why we persist in doing it anyway. We worry about our jobs and our children and our health and every other thing under the sun. We think through all the things that might happen in any given situation and drive ourselves crazy with “What if…”
I’ve come to the conclusion that worrying is our way of holding on to what we imagine is control over our lives. If we think through all the “what ifs” and decide what our actions or reactions would be, then we feel prepared for what comes next. I do that all the time, though not in what I call “worry” mode. I simply try to look at a situation from several viewpoints and predict at least two or three outcomes so I’m prepared to deal with them. However, worry begins when we either envision so many possible outcomes that we are unprepared to deal with any of them, or we focus on the worst scenario and refuse to look at any others. We become so caught up in the cycle of the worrying itself, that we become despondent about anything working out in our favor.
Another problem with worry is that it is based on a very flawed premise: that we can imagine ALL the possible outcomes of a situation. That assumes a lot about our intelligence, knowledge, and experience! God gave us the ability to think and the will to choose. But even the best brains among us are limited, and only He knows what will happen next. Many of the best and worst things in my life have come about in ways that I would NEVER have imagined in a month of Sundays.
Worry adds nothing positive to our daily lives. It isn’t productive. It isn’t motivational. It isn’t worthy of our time and effort. So today I’m sharing some of my favorite Bible verses about worry. I am reminded of them daily as I walk through the yard and look at the way God cares for the plants and critters around me.
25 “Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothes? 26 Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they? 27 Can any one of you by worrying add a single hour to your life[a]?
28 “And why do you worry about clothes? See how the flowers of the field grow. They do not labor or spin. 29 Yet I tell you that not even Solomon in all his splendor was dressed like one of these. 30 If that is how God clothes the grass of the field, which is here today and tomorrow is thrown into the fire, will he not much more clothe you—you of little faith? 31 So do not worry, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ 32 For the pagans run after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them. 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.