The word of God hidden in the heart is a stubborn voice to suppress. – Billy Graham
I was a worry wart. Big time ... all the way through my childhood, teenage years and college. Worry almost seemed to be some sort of a badge of honor, something that gave significance to my life, showing that I was engaged in something important enough to truly be concerned about.
And then I married Libby. I had this new beautiful bride, so I had a whole new category of worry. Libby worked in Milwaukee – about a 45-minute drive from our home. On snowy nights I'd be waiting for her to get home... waiting, waiting, worrying. This was before cell phones, of course, so she couldn't call me if she was running a little behind. As the snow drifted outside our window, the waiting and the worrying would snowball in my mind, certain that she was stranded, alone, upside down in a ditch. More than once, she would come home and happily bound in the door only to find me in tears of fear and worry. Thankfully, God's Word, the sword of the Spirit, intervened and cut deeply into that situation.
"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 important than food, and the body more important 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? Who of you by worrying can add a single hour to his life?" – Matthew 6:25-27
Slice! The familiar words cut deeply. Jesus said, "Do not worry," and the Holy Spirit said to me, "Pete, your worry is not some little personality quirk or sign of commitment. If Jesus says 'don't' and you still do, what would that make your worry?"
The conclusion was obvious: Worry is the exact opposite of trust and faith. Worry is a sin to bring before the Lord. It took me to my knees asking, "Jesus, do something. Holy Spirit, do something about this!" They did. Through the Word and the Spirit, Jesus redeemed me from worry completely. In fact, nowadays I worry that I don't worry enough!
That's God's Word in action. That's the sword of the Spirit which Paul calls us to take up as part of the armor of God in the battles we fight every day.
My battle that day was against worry. What's yours today?
Father God, I am incomplete and desperately in need of You today! By the power of Your Spirit in me, and by the truth of Your Word, the sword of the Spirit, I stand aside and ask that You would search my heart and show me my ways. Show me the places where my life is out of line with Your truth. Without You, I can do nothing to correct this. But all things are possible through You. Do something, Jesus. Do something about this, Holy Spirit. Amen.
Listen to Pete, Jill & Stuart Briscoe on the Telling the Truth broadcast at OnePlace.com
Stuart Briscoe’s End Times: What’s Going On? DVD or CD series