Have you ever noticed that somethings you learned and perhaps feel that you have mastered often require learning again?! While I do not like to admit it, there are some teachings in the Bible from which I would benefit by remedial education. The lesson of “not worrying” is one of those. I do believe that worrying is learned behavior, but I also believe “worrying” is in our genetic make-up. On both sides of my family there are “worriers.” These family members are also Christians, but still they and I have our share of worries.
Just recently my mother was visited by a home health care nurse. She had inquired about how things were going for Mother and I suppose she shared some of her concerns. The from out of nowhere the nurse took on a persona as a pastor. She told Mother that she should: “Let go and let God!” Mother was taken by surprise and had not seen such a remark coming.
Mother and I know the truth of such a statement, and we are aware that we should turn all of our concerns, troubles and worries over to God. We also know that worrying does not resolve anything. It is God who gives us the strength to bear the burdens of life and the Lord can steady us when so many things buffet us at once. While we know all these things, we can still lapse into old familiar patterns of being anxious and worrying. It is then that a timely reminder often comes along to reassure us that God will take care of us and that there is a need to worry.
O God, forgive us when we return to old familiar ways that suggest You are not sovereign. Pardon our failure to trust You. Free us from worrying. And “when we’re worried and we can’t sleep, just [help us to] count our blessings instead of sheep and we’ll fall asleep counting our blessings.* (courtesy of I. Berlin) In Jesus’ name, we pray. Amen.