Scripture Devotion

Worrying in Rockdale Texas

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It’s Great to Be Alive and in Rockdale Texas!

I was a Junior in High School, went to first of August football “two-a-days”.  When we came back after lunch for our second practice, we found out that our brand new coach, after only one practice, had resigned and left town to deal with a family issue.  Wait what?  One practice and the coach was gone.  Our newly elevated former assistant, now head coach, looked at a bunch of confused boys, wondering about the future, and he said something I’ve never forgotten, he said “boys it’s great to be alive and in Rockdale, Texas.” It was a great moment, as he sought to put our fears at ease and told us to focus on the important things, and focus on the future.  He was telling us that life was worth focusing on and to let go of the things we couldn’t do anything about, that what was important was NOW.

Worry – do you love it, hate it, feed on it, secretly need it?  It’s a terrible thing, worry.  Sometimes we think that somehow, if we worry, in a twisted way, we think we can control or hold on to situations that are out of our control.

Jesus teaches us in Matthew 6:25 “do not worry about your life”.  Does that mean “live a life of apathy?  No, not at all, that is counter to the overall weight of scripture.  So, this is something deeper.  Jesus defines “life” as it’s being assumed as “what you will eat, or what you will wear” … We are talking here about out of balance wants and obsessing over needs.  The word “worry” is the Greek word, “merimnao” = “to be anxious”.  He is saying, do not have anxiety over things that aren’t really life, like what you will eat or wear.

Paul uses the same word and thoughts when he says in Philippians 4:6 “do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer with thanksgiving, present your requests to God …”.  The governor for anxiety is a thankful heart and a worshipful, trusting, spirit that gives my concerns to God and allows him to bring about my best.  So then, I can truly with Philippians 4:4 “rejoice in the Lord always”.

Jesus continues in Matthew 6:25 “… is not life more important than food and clothes?”   The Lord clothes the flowers, he feeds the birds and he says in verse 30 “if that is how God clothes the grass which is here today and tomorrow is thrown into the fire, will he not much more clothe you, O you of little faith.?”  Oh Hallelujah!  We have a “much more” God!  We have an “exceedingly abundant God”.  So, verse 31 says “so do not worry … for the pagans run after all these things“.  A life of anxiety is a pagan lifestyle.  It is indicative of one who worships idols.  Why do the pagans worry?  They worry because their god sits on a shelf.  They worship inanimate, man-made objects.  But we serve, we worship, The Living True God.

Anxiety be gone

Worry be banished

Security, Trust, and Love reign over me.

Verse 25 begins “Therefore”.  You know what that means right?  It means we need to look before and see what it is there for.  So, what was the point that brought Jesus to this teaching?  Verse 24 says we have divided hearts.  Jesus says we can’t serve two masters.  We can’t serve God and Money.  You know for a Spiritual book, the Bible sure talks a lot about money.  Why is that?  It is because our hearts are often divided by inordinate pleasures.  We are taught by scripture to give tithes and offerings, yes to fund ministry, but that’s only a byproduct.  It is to help us with our treasure principles.

Verse 19 says “do not store up treasures on earth”  Oh aren’t our houses full of things we treasured inordinately?  Yes.  Dust is piled up on the things we thought we needed.  Perhaps there are things God would have given us if we had asked or would have instructed that we did not need and we could have invested those funds in treasures in heaven instead.

Verse 20 says “store up treasures in heaven”.  Verse 21 says “where your treasure is there your heart will be also”.  When my treasures are IN order, then i don’t worry and anxiety is out the window.

Therefore, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink or about your body, what you will wear.  Is not life more important than food and the body more important than clothes?

Is it NOT?  Say it with me … “YES”

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