In light of the busy times here at college in addition to work, financial concerns, planning for graduation in a few years, future plans, and other things, it is easy for a sophomore (soon to be junior) in college to find plenty of things to worry about! Such has been my case over the past few days and weeks as different burdens have been on my heart. Some I took to the Lord in prayer while others I failed to do this resulting in a daily burden which I could not handle myself. The subject of worry is one which every person, whether young or old, will face at some point in his life. From a Christian perspective then, what should the response be? I remember my youth pastor preached a sermon on worry from Matthew 6. In his sermon he mentioned how worry is to express distrust in God, essentially saying that even though we trust God for our salvation and we claim to trust His Word, in reality we are offering a great offense to God when we worry. In essence, worry is to live as though God did not exist to provide for our needs and take care of us. Could there be anything more offensive for a Christian to do than fail to trust in God? It has been rightly said that if we trust God with our eternal soul, what is there that we can’t trust God with? As this has been on my mind the past few days, God has reminded me of my need for daily grace. I am in constant need of exposure to the gospel, the good news of what Christ has done and accomplished through His death, burial, and resurrection. Because of the success of Christ over sin and temptation, we also have victory over sin through the finished work of Jesus Christ! Furthermore, a Christian can rest confidently knowing that all of our needs will be provided by our Father. Theology is important because what we truly believe will dictate our actions; therefore if we believe God to be sovereign over all and to take care of our needs, why do we have a problem with worry? Simply put, worry is still a temptation of both the flesh and Satan. Instead of letting worry consume us, the natural reaction of a Christian should be to turn to God in prayer and give every burden over to Him while also seeking forgiveness for our lack of trust in our Savior and Sustainer. Below is an excerpt from Wuest’s Word Studies that was an encouragement and challenge to me in my devotions today and I hope will be a benefit to everyone who reads it.
In Philippians 4:6 we are exhorted to be careful for nothing. We have here a word that has changed its meaning. Today it means to exercise caution. When our translation was made it meant to be full of anxious care. The Greek word is used in a second century sentence, “I am writing in haste to prevent your being anxious, for I will see that you are not worried.” The word therefore is a synonym for the word “worry.” The force of the word in the Greek is that of forbidding the continuance of an action already going on. Thus the translation is, “Stop perpetually worrying about even one thing.” The same Greek word is found in Matthew 6:25 and is translated, “Take no thought.” We have the same force of the Greek here. “Stop perpetually worrying.” This recognizes the habitual attitude of the unsaved human heart toward the problems and difficulties of life. God commands us to “Stop perpetually worrying about even one thing.” We commit sin when we worry. We do not trust God when we worry. We do not receive answers to prayer when we worry, because we are not trusting.
But this command not to worry is founded upon a reasonable basis. That is, there is a reason why we need not worry. In I Peter 5:7 we have, “Casting all your care upon him, for he careth for you.” The word “care” is from the same Greek word. We are commanded to cast all our worry upon Him. The word “cast” is not the ordinary word in Greek which means “to throw,” but one which signifies a definite act of the will in committing to Him our worries, giving them up to Him. That means that we are through worrying about the matter. We will let God assume the responsibility for our welfare in the premises. And that is just what He desires to do. We are to commit to Him all our worries, or the things that would worry us if we assumed the responsibility, because He cares for us. But the word “careth” is not the word for “worry” in the Greek. The expression in the original means literally, “it is a care to him concerning you.” That is, your welfare is His concern. He in bringing you in salvation into His family, has undertaken the responsibility of caring for your welfare. Therefore, if that is true, why worry?
There is on record in an early Greek manuscript, the name of a man called Titedios Amerimnos. The first name is a proper name. The second name is made up of the word which means “to worry,” with the Greek letter Alpha prefixed to it which makes the word mean the opposite of what it formerly meant. It is thought that this man was a pagan Greek who perpetually worried, but who after being saved, stopped worrying. So he was called, “Titedios, the Man who Never Worries.” Can we write our name and add to it, “The One Who Never Worries”?