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Don't worry! Be happy! Live in the present. Walk in Righteousness. God loves you. God will provide.

There was once a man who was a worrier. It showed in his face and his posture. He seemed to carry the weight of the world on his shoulders.

One day this man changed. He had a bounce to his step. It was as if he had not a care in the world. Finally, a friend asked what had happened.

"Well, as you know, I have always been one to worry. I have decided this is both unwise and unhealthy, so I have hired someone to worry me."

"But how much does this cost you?" the friend asked.

"Oh, about $1,000 a week," the man replied.

"But how can you afford to pay this man who worries for you?" was the astonishing response.

The man answered calmly, "That's his worry!"

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I wish it were that easy for some of us to eliminate our worries.

Worry about big things and little. Worry about the future. Worry about the past. Worry about our finances, worry about our family.

What is worry?

Worry: To give way to anxiety or unease; allow one's mind to dwell on difficulty or troubles.

I don't know about you, but I have been guilty of letting my mind dwell on trouble. I have focused on the difficulty I see all around me. It's kind of hard not to.

Does it seem like the enemy is winning the battle right now?

In our lives, we must stand on the Word of God if we will make it through difficult times.

Jesus spoke about worry. It's a well-known portion of scripture, and it gives me comfort and peace each time I read it.

Listen to Jesus and imagine Him speaking this directly to you and your situation; make it personal, and it might change everything.


Matthew 6:25–34 NLT

25 "That is why I tell you not to worry about everyday life—whether you have enough food and drink, or enough clothes to wear. Isn't life more than food, and your body more than clothing?


26 Look at the birds. They don't plant or harvest or store food in barns, for your heavenly Father feeds them. And aren't you far more valuable to him than they are?

27 Can all your worries add a single moment to your life?


28 "And why worry about your clothing? Look at the lilies of the field and how they grow. They don't work or make their clothing,


29 yet Solomon in all his glory was not dressed as beautifully as they are.


30 And if God cares so wonderfully for wildflowers that are here today and thrown into the fire tomorrow, he will certainly care for you. Why do you have so little faith?


31 "So don't worry about these things, saying, 'What will we eat? What will we drink? What will we wear?'


32 These things dominate the thoughts of unbelievers, but your heavenly Father already knows all your needs.


33 Seek the Kingdom of God above all else, and live righteously, and he will give you everything you need.

34 "So don't worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will bring its own worries. Today's trouble is enough for today.

You should take these words to heart.

If you are worrying yourself sick over some situation over which you have no control. You need desperately to stop for a moment, consider the birds of the air and the lilies of the field and turn your worries over to God.

Worry is a needless burden that keeps us from being all God created us to be.

If you have a real problem, it alone is burden enough without weighing yourself down with still another one, that of worry.

If you were sick, would you take something that would make you sicker? For example, would you go to a football game if you had a headache?

Of course not!

Yet, that is what we do when we have a problem, and then we treat it with worry. We add another burden.

How can we rid ourselves of worry? What does Jesus say that can help us lighten our load this day?

First of all, we need to understand that we should know...

Worry is a Symptom

Worry is not based so much on an outer circumstance as an inner condition.

This is what I mean - Worry comes not so much from what is happening to us on the outside but from how we process it on the inside.

When Jesus spoke those words about worry, He was talking to a group with genuine concerns about survival.

There were no government programs to serve as a safety net.

If they lost their job, they really could starve. They really could lose everything.

We worry more with less reason than any people who ever lived.

This is not to minimize the authentic problems that many of us face. But I know we face circumstances that cause us to worry. Of course, each of us has life, and we can worry about countless things we face. But, most importantly, we all have food, water, and shelter.

So, when we read this scripture, how can we interpret what Jesus was saying to people who didn't have those essentials? How can we apply His words to our lives today?

Often our worry reflects the condition of our souls more than it does our circumstances.

For some people, a bad hair day is a real crisis, a cause of deep personal anguish.

For others of us, a diagnosis of cancer can be dealt with confidently with faith in the love of God.

You see, It depends on what you have on the inside more than what is confronting you on the outside.

The outward circumstance is the same, but inwardly there is a genuine difference in how some people face their situation.

Worry is not based so much on an outer circumstance as much on an inner condition. We may not be able to solve the outward circumstance, but we can control how we respond.

We must Live in the Present.

Matthew 6:34 NLT

34 "So don't worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will bring its own worries. Today's trouble is enough for today.

That sounds somewhat negative. "tomorrow will bring its own worries or troubles," But it is good advice.

You and I aren't God. We don't know the future. We may be worrying about something that will never happen.

We may be worrying about something that will resolve itself. But instead, we need to focus on today.

I used to manage three different businesses and a church at one time. We had more than 125 employees. Well, I don't need to tell you, but there was a lot of stress to keep things going. We were constantly working ourselves out of a job. We'd get contracts that would have to be replaced as we worked through the job. It was stressful, and I have to admit that I worried.

I worried that we wouldn't have money to make payroll, the work would dry up, or our key employees would quit. It would keep me up at night. I would worry about it EVERY day. Sometimes I'd wake up at 3 in the morning and head to the office just because I felt more in control when working.

I was always thinking about the next day, week, or month instead of focusing on the day's blessing.

We had everything we ever wanted from a worldly point of view, but I was lacking in my day-to-day life because I was always looking ahead, worried that I would lose what we had that day.

It was no way to live. I was not living in the present and seeing the goodness of God every day.

Looking back, I had no absolute control over the future. But God put us in the right places at the right time. If I could go back and have a conversation with past Shannon, I would tell him what Jesus is telling us tonight… Don't worry about tomorrow.

God is so good to us. Yet, we sometimes forget His great faithfulness to His children.

Things aren't always going to be good. We are going to face hard things. Things that seem like they can break us, but we must remember the big picture. We must have faith that God is able and willing to help in our times of need.

We need to trust that with time, He will work things out even if the outcome is not what we thought we wanted.

Jesus says we can't add a day to our life by worrying. So, why should we worry? It doesn't do anything but make a tornado of nothingness in our lives and the lives of those we love.

A famous speaker once put life into perspective like this: "You are born. That's big stuff. You die. Big stuff. Everything in between--small stuff!"

Don't sweat the small stuff. At the end of the day, we don't remember the small stuff anyway!

One of the secrets of a fulfilled life is to focus on today.

Are you healthy at this moment? Do you have enough to live in this moment? Are your children well at this moment? Then give God thanks for this moment no matter what. And try not to anticipate what may never occur.

Live, says Jesus, in the present.

Another way to defeat worry is to Live Righteously.

‌Matthew 6:31–33 NLT

31 "So don't worry about these things, saying, 'What will we eat? What will we drink? What will we wear?'


32 These things dominate the thoughts of unbelievers, but your heavenly Father already knows all your needs.

33 Seek the Kingdom of God above all else, and live righteously, and he will give you everything you need.

Jesus said to live Righteously. Righteousness is a keyword in this formula for defeating worry.

Many people worry out of a sense of guilt.

There was a retired man who had a guilty conscience for 80 years over planting a firecracker on a railway track. The man had planted the firecracker on a track at his local railway station in 1926 and ran off when he was spotted by railway police.

Ever since then, he has been tormented by guilt feelings. He claims it was the only bad thing he had ever done--and he decided to turn himself in. He went to the local police station and confessed, asking officers if they still had a file on the case open and asking what his punishment would be.

The police told him the offense was never reported, and, in any case, it had passed the statute of limitations, and he would not be facing any charges. They did, however, warn him not to do it again.

This man's conscience was too well-developed.

But there are many people who torment themselves for decades over something that they did in the past that was wrong.

Maybe they fear exposure.

Maybe they fear the consequences of their actions.

It may be the knowledge that what they did was wrong.

It robs them of their peace of mind.

One way we can defeat worry is always to try to do the right thing.

Is that possible? In reality, no. So, how can we live a righteous life? What does Jesus mean when He tells us to seek righteousness?

Well, it's two things.

First, we do need to put away childish things. We need to repent and stop living in known sin. We've got to grow spiritually, and part of that means that we work to become better Christians.

Secondly, I believe it means we recognize that we can't live up to God's standard of righteousness. We need Christ.

‌Romans 3:22 NLT

22 We are made right with God by placing our faith in Jesus Christ. And this is true for everyone who believes, no matter who we are.

Too many times, we worry that we aren't good enough. Well, we need to settle that issue in our hearts right now. We aren't. It never can be.

We can and should repent. We need to surrender to Christ. We need to confess our sins for sure. But that's NOT what makes us right with God.

Only Jesus can take our place and make us right before God. We must not worry about not living up to the same standard of perfection as Jesus. It's just not going to happen.

When I say that we should Always do the right thing, what I mean is that we must rely on Christ for our righteousness and allow Him to change our hearts so that we can live rightly.

Focus on today, says Jesus. Live righteously.

If you walk in righteousness, then you walk in power and authority.

We can only do this if we Trust in God's Love.


‌Matthew 6:28–30 NLT

28 "And why worry about your clothing? Look at the lilies of the field and how they grow. They don't work or make their clothing,


29 yet Solomon in all his glory was not dressed as beautifully as they are.


30 And if God cares so wonderfully for wildflowers that are here today and thrown into the fire tomorrow, he will certainly care for you. Why do you have so little faith?

The Greek word for lilies means wildflowers or weeds. Jesus is referring to any plant that is both lovely and will grow on its own without cultivation.

Since wood was scarce in Palestine, these wildflowers were sometimes used for fire. Jesus is saying, "Look, God's care extends even to these wildflowers, which eventually end up in a furnace. How much more, then, will he care for you, 'O you of little faith?'"

And that is the heart of the problem, isn't it, our lack of faith?

We really don't know how much God loves us. That's why we worry about the future. That's why we hold on to the mistakes of our past.

I love the way Isaiah 49:14-15 puts it, "But Zion said, 'The LORD has forsaken me, the Lord has forgotten me.'"

Then Isaiah adds these wonderful words,

"Can a mother forget the baby at her breast and have no compassion on the child she has borne? Though she may forget, I will not forget you!"

Isaiah is saying that even our own mother might forget us or forsake us, but God never will. Can you even imagine a greater love than a mother for her child? And yet God's love for each of us is greater than even that.

What would we do in faith if we understood the love of God?

So this is the message that Jesus has for us this day: Don't worry! Be happy! Live in the present. Walk in Righteousness. God loves you. God will provide for you.

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