Worry Doesn't Help, So Why Waste Your Time?
“Do not be anxious about anything” (Philippians 4:6 NIV).
Worry will kill your joy and cause you stress. We tend to expect the worst in life. Anxiety disorders are the most common mental illness in the United States. According to the Anxiety and Depression Association of America, they affect 18.1 percent of the U.S. population.
But worry isn’t just a mental issue. It’s a spiritual one. It’s assuming a responsibility that God never intended for us to have. It’s playing God and trying to control the uncontrollable.
There was once a scientific study on worry that discovered:
- 40% of our worries never happen
- 30% of our worries concern the past
- 12% of our worries are needless worries about our health
- 10% of our worries are insignificant or petty concerns
- 8% of our worries are really legitimate concerns
Worry is worthless. It can’t change the past or control the future. It only messes you up right now. It’s an incredible waste of energy. It’s stewing without doing. When we worry about things, they get bigger and bigger.
The Bible says, “Do not worry about anything” (Philippians 4:6 NCV). It’s one of the hardest commands to obey. It’s even more countercultural when you consider where Paul was when he wrote it. He was sitting in a prison waiting for the emperor to execute him.
Worry is something we learn to do. You must practice worry to get good at it. If it is learned, it can also be unlearned.
Jesus said in Matthew 6:34, “Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own” (NIV).
Jesus gives us the ultimate antidote to worry.
Live one day at a time. God will take care of tomorrow.
Talk It Over
- What worries weigh you down the most?
- How do you usually deal with your worries? Does it work?
- Who in your life can pray with you about what’s worrying you?
This devotional © 2018 by Rick Warren. All rights reserved. Used by permission.
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