God brings peace to the worried
October 23, 2011
Have you noticed people are a little stressed out these days? Worry, anxiety and stress seem to be the norm, and it doesn’t take long to figure out why. The economy, housing market, jobs and debt. Parents worry about their kids and kids worry about their future.
What to do with so much worry? Pharmaceutical companies say medicate, some think drugs or alcohol will solve their problems, others think they can run from worry. When people don’t know how to handle stress, the scriptures have a definite prescription for such issues.
Matthew 6:31-34 (Jesus said), “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.”
Jesus took life down to its basic needs, and says “those without faith are consumed with such things, but people of faith should have a different approach to life’s worries.”
Jesus said, put the most important things first. He’s not saying kick back and don’t work, he’s not saying watch for “manna from heaven,” but he is saying if you claim to have faith – make sure your priorities are right.
“Seek first” God’s kingdom. God’s kingdom is not of this world yet the kingdom of God is lived out in this world. Jesus taught that God dwells with and provides for those who trust him. So make your first priority to seek God’s kingdom. How does that play out practically?
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For those who have faith in Christ, you practice your faith. That means you lay down your life for others, you serve your spouse, you place your kids before yourself, and worship God in private and corporately. You pray, you trust and live out your faith.
Secondly, Jesus said, seek God’s righteousness. Some want to be “Self-righteous,” but that’s what Jesus condemned. So what’s he talking about? First it means to have the righteousness of God imputed into your life.
2 Corinthians 5:21 “God made him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.”
The believer understands that by faith in Christ, you become righteous in God’s sight. Righteousness that is by faith declares a person justified before God because, “Jesus Christ died for their sins.” That’s not something you can earn, but a free gift from God, and the beginning of a relationship with God.
But there is another righteousness that Jesus speaks about, after you come to God, you begin to live right before God and your fellow man.
1 John 2:29 “If you know that he is righteous, you know that everyone who does what is right has been born of him.”
Do right, keep God’s commands. Do right, keep the law of the land. Do right, do good in every situation. Do right, let the words of your mouth, the attitudes of your heart and your actions be what you know is right.
Stressed, worried, anxious? Follow the prescription Jesus gives, have proper priorities and understand that; “Although life brings worry, God brings peace.”
Pastor Rich Lammay of High Sierra Fellowship is a member of Carson Valley Ministers’ Association.