Two posts prior to this one, I was questioning where I am. I was asking God a lot of questions. Why was I caught in a web of lies that the enemy kept hurling on me? Why was I not going anywhere? Why was I stuck, disatisfied, in tears, and hurting? “Why, Daddy? Why?”
I love getting personal e-mails, and whenever I get them from my friend (who is my bestfriend’s bestfriend) Patty, I love them all the more. I love hearing about God’s faithfulness in her life, and after reading a lengthy e-mail from her (no complaints here), I find myself praying for the two of us, that we may remain in His love and that we would continue to see His goodness come what may.
She e-mailed me this series of talk on Worry last April (I think) but I only got to downloading them lately. Yesterday, as I commuted to various places for school, work and personal reasons, I listened to all three parts and I was blown away by all the realizations I got. Literally blown away. I was smiling, and amen-ing, and crazily laughing to myself while the people around me was looking at me with their eyebrows raised. I don’t care, though. Yesterday, I was on a high. The Lord is just crazy good and loving.
Here are some of the notes I took down from the talk and I plan to remind myself these things over and over again so I would never forget.
- You can’t stop worrying by simply not worrying. You can only stop worrying by fully surrendering your life to God’s agenda for your life.
- The things that we worry about the most are the things to which we are most devoted to. To stop worrying, we must shift our devotions to the One who is in charge of all our worries and fears: God.
- “Why are you here?” If you believe in God, if you acknowledge His faithfulness, and if you can attest to His goodness, why are you worrying? Did you know that worrying is also as if you’re saying that there is no God?
- If you worry today, you actually erase God’s past faithfulness in your life. Do what you have to do today and let God work on your tomorrow.
So what was I worrying about these past few days? The usuals: relationships, career, and ministry. I want to do SO MUCH for my last year as a college student, that suddenly fear and anxiety crippled in. What if? What if these girls are farther from me than I thought? What if my boss did not like my internship performance? What if I don’t get to do my dream job after college because of that? What if I chicken out at the very sight of that person? What if I don’t get to start what God wants me to do in my church, in my cellgroup, in my school, and in my life? In short: worries.
But the Lord said stop. Stop, and look at the birds of the air and the lilies of the fields. Look at how faithful the Lord is that He would give the birds food and that He would clothe the lilies in all their splendor. Look and ask yourself: “Are you not much more valuable than they?”
YES. You are FAAAAAAAR more valuable than these other creations. Because you are patterned after God Himself. You are His image and likeness. You are the epitome of perfection. Sure, you’re not without flaws. You’re not without mistakes, letdowns, and all of that. But you, reading this blog (or in my case: You, listening to this podcast), right now, you are altogether perfect. Lovely. Pleasing and delightful to God’s eyes.
So why worry? When a God like Him loves you so much that He sent His precious Son to die in your place, why worry? Even if you’re the only person on Earth, He’d still send Jesus, you know. That’s how much He loves you. And though you can’t comprehend that very thought in its entirety, I think knowing that God loves you is enough.
So maybe we’d say “Yeah, that’s easier said than done.” You want to stop worrying, but that’s your career at stake. That’s your love life which is so uncertain. That’s your ministry in the rocks. Everything’s a chaos. What to do?
“But seek first His kingdom and His righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well.” (Matthew 6:33)
I don’t think it’s a suggestion. I think it’s a command. If it was a mere suggestion, Jesus could’ve said “But if you really want to get all these things you can try seeking God’s Kingdom first. Maybe that’ll work instead of worrying.” No. Straight on He said seek. Seek His Kingdom. In short, put His Kingdom above everything else.
“Even my career?” YES
“Even my love life?” YES
“Wait, EVEN MY PARENTS?”
YES YES YES. A thousand times yes. Seeking God’s plan for your life, His perfect will, and His thoughts (which are higher than ours! Isaiah 55:8-10!) is the only way we can stop worrying. Fixing our eyes on Him who alone is trusthworthy and faithful is the only way to go.
Of course, there might come days when my mind might think otherwise, like that other day when I posted that very emotional post with the lyrics of Rivermaya’s Elesi inserted in between paragraphs. If I don’t fix my eyes on my God, I might stumble and fall. I wish everywhere in the Philippines, there are signs plastered with the three words “DO NOT WORRY” in loud, bold letters. Wishful thinking is wishful.
Instead, I will think about the Lord. I will think about His past faithfulness in my life. “If He did this, if He gave me that…” If He allowed me to enter Ateneo, then I’m sure He’ll also make a way so I can exit gracefully from that university. If He gave me wonderful girls, then surely He’ll give me grace to see beyond what’s happening at the moment and focus on what lies ahead for all of us. And if He has given me a heart that beats for Him, surely He’ll help me focus on Him alone.
“His will will never leave you where His grace cannot keep you.”
All in God’s time. All according to His will. All through Him.
Here’s to Hakuna Matata. 🙂
Just a few things: Here’s the first part of Andy Stanley’s lecture on worrying, and I highly recommend that you watch it. 🙂
And if you’re in a position right now where everything seems like a blur, whatever you’re going through right now, do remember: God cares. If you want someone to talk to, or if you just want someone who will listen and pray for you, leave me a message in my e-mail[email@example.com] or in my Tumblr ask.
I also made a Tumblr tag (#healing) to compile all the songs that helped (and would help) me during times of loneliness and pain. There’s a God who loves us so tremendously, and He really really cares.
Be blessed! 🙂