By Pastor Anthony L. Scott
“Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything; tell God your needs and don’t forget to thank Him for His answers.” Philippians 4:6 (The Living Bible)
Who is this sainted Apostle that encourages God’s people with the words, “Don’t worry about anything?” We have a man locked in a Roman prison awaiting trial and quite possibly execution. Everything in his future was absolutely dark and uncertain. Yet with all the pressure of personal sorrow weighing heavy upon him and amidst the crisis of his own life, he cheerfully tells them and us, “Don’t worry about anything.” From this rich passage we dissect from its vast resources some survival techniques for anxiety, stress, and strain.
Having obtained peace with God, how do we maintain the peace of God? How do we keep the peace of God ruling and reigning within our souls? How do we keep a consciousness of God’s very own presence within us-an awareness that the “God of peace” lives within our very being?
Your first Survival Technique is, be anxious for nothing. The word anxious literally means to have a divided mind. The mind is being stretched in two different directions or vibrating between two attractions. Our thoughts have found no place to settle down and rest.
Under the pressure of anxiety we become apprehensive and confused. Every cloud becomes darker, every weight becomes heavier, and our outlook becomes bleak and dreadful. There is an answer to worry and anxiety, a supernatural answer: the peace of God.
Your next Survival Technique is, be thankful. A thankful heart is so crowded with God it can show no hospitality to worry. One of the unique attributes of being a child of God is our ability under His enablement to praise Him for those things we have yet to see accomplished. Anxiety can resist everything except thanksgiving.
Anxiety comes with two guarantees, it will accomplish nothing and it will weaken and wear you out. An anxious farmer wound up his alarm clock and set it to go off at six o’clock in the morning. He then sat up all night in order to make sure he heard it when it sounded. He was so exhausted by this tedious vigil that when the morning came he was good for nothing. Meet worry with worship and see your cares melt away in His presence.
Your final Survival Technique is, be prayerful. A lady asked her doctor, “How is it that I can bear great troubles but allow petty annoyances to cause me so much grief?” The doctor said, “It’s because you carry your great trials to God but you try to manage the little ones for yourself.”
God would have us turn everything over to Him. We are to pray about everything no matter how small or insignificant it may seem. God is interested in the details of our lives, even in the minute details. Acknowledge Him in all your ways and He will care for and look after every single step.
Victor Hugo said, “Have courage for the great sorrows of life and patience for the small ones. And when you have finished your daily task, go to sleep in peace. God is awake!” “Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on thee: because he trusteth in thee (Isaiah 26:3).”