Worry and stress go hand in hand. If you’re worried about something, you’re probably going to start getting stressed out over it. And if you’re like me, you’ll start worrying about getting stressed out because stress is unhealthy, but that’s another story.
And who doesn’t get worried? Most of the time, we worry and stress about legitimately, well, worrisome things. Then, of course, there are those times when we get all stressed out over something that proves to be absolutely nothing.
That’s exactly what happened to me five minutes ago, and I can’t tell you how relieved I was to discover that the thing I had been worrying about was nothing at all. It suddenly struck me, however, how silly the whole thing had been. Why had I been so worried? Over the past couple days, I’ve gone from stressed to depressed and back again, and sometimes a mixture of both–all because of a little thing that proved to be nothing.
We’ve all experience that kind of needless stress. And as I write this, I can’t help but wonder: what does God think of what we call “legitimate” stress?
“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? 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? Can any one of you by worrying add a single hour to your life?
“And why do you worry about clothes? See how the flowers of the field grow. They do not labor or spin. Yet I tell you that not even Solomon in all his splendor was dressed like one of these. 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? So do not worry, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ For the pagans run after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them. But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well. Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.
“Can any one of you by worrying add a single hour to your life?” I love that. When something goes wrong in our lives, we have a perfectly understandable need to do something. In many cases, however, “doing something” just means worrying. Jesus knows how often this happens to us, and he wants to relieve us of this burden.
Basically, throughout this passage, He’s saying, “What’s the point of your worries? Worrying accomplishes nothing.” We can’t change something in our lives by just worrying about it.
When I read this passage in the midst of worry and stress, I sometimes have this response: “God, I know that worrying isn’t really helping me, but I can’t just sit around and do nothing!” We often feel as if by not worrying about a problem, we’re neglecting it.
Jesus doesn’t want us to worry about our problems, but he doesn’t want us to neglect them either. He tells us to “seek first” the kingdom of God and his righteousness, “and all these things will be given to you as well”. Jesus doesn’t say, “Don’t worry! Just forget about it!” He says, “Don’t worry! Take your troubles to me and lay them at my feet, and I will take care of them.”
Jesus doesn’t want us to face our troubles alone! And He doesn’t want us to face them with worry and stress on our “team”. He is on our side. The God of the universe wants to deliver us from worry and fear, troubles and stress!
God is saying to you, “Don’t worry; just seek Me.”
Seek God above all else. This goes beyond going to God to help us with our worries, our stress. We go to God first because, in reality, He is all we need.
So whether you’re dealing with “silly stress” or some major problem in your life, go to God. Seek Him with all your heart. Your problems won’t all go away, but as you kneel in His presence, you will realize that He is greater than your problems, He loves you infinitely, and you have nothing to worry about.
Note: Any feedback on my blog’s new look would be greatly appreciated! I tend to worry about changing things… so I suppose this post definitely applies to me!!