The one thing the Lord does not want us to do is worry!
He has a lot to say to us about being anxious about things
John 14:27….Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you: not as the world giveth, give I unto you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.
We are told by Jesus to not let our hearts be troubled, which means that if our hearts are troubled then we have let them be so.
There is a strong element of choice implied here by Jesus.
If I say to my child: ‘do not let this be so’…then I mean do not!
A lot of people say : ‘well I just cant help worrying’. This means then that they think that Jesus is asking them to do something that they cannot do. Why would Jesus tell us not to be troubled or fearful about things if we couldn’t do it? That wouldn’t be fair. He knows we can turn our thoughts away from anxiety and turn them onto His promises and on Him to help us with our troubles.
He encourages us from the beginning of this scripture to draw from His peace.
He says He has left His peace with us and He has given His peace to us
In other words it with us already. I have it already.
He has not given me worry. No. Instead He has given me His peace.
His peace is with us already! I don’t have to try to get peace if Jesus has already given it to me. I just have to know I have His peace and make full use of it and take advantage of it and draw from it anytime I need to.
One of the ways I do this is to speak to Him about my circumstances, tell Him what I need and then thank Him for hearing me. Then the peace of God which passes my understanding will keep my heart and my mind free from anxiety!
This is just how it works!
22 And [Jesus] said to His disciples, Therefore I tell you, do not be anxious and troubled [with cares] about your life, as to what you will [have to] eat; or about your body, as to what you will [have to] wear.
23 For life is more than food, and the body [more] than clothes.
24 Observe and consider the ravens; for they neither sow nor reap, they have neither storehouse nor barn; and [yet] God feeds them. Of how much more worth are you than the birds!
Again Jesus speaks tenderly to us and this time He says: DO NOT be anxious and troubled with cares about your life. He tells us that we are of great value to Him and if even the birds are fed by God, then we will surely be taken care of by God!
John 16:33….These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world.
Again Jesus talks about us being at peace in troubled situations. Jesus knows that we will experience difficulties in this world but He doesn’t want us being anxious at such times . He says that His peace in troubled circumstances is always available to us instead.
A very good friend of Jesus found herself all wound up and strung out up one day
38 Now it came to pass, as they went, that he entered into a certain village: and a certain woman named Martha received him into her house.
39 And she had a sister called Mary, which also sat at Jesus' feet, and heard his word.
40 But Martha was cumbered about much serving, and came to him, and said, Lord, dost thou not care that my sister hath left me to serve alone? bid her therefore that she help me.
41 And Jesus answered and said unto her, Martha, Martha, thou art careful and troubled about many things:
42 But one thing is needful: and Mary hath chosen that good part, which shall not be taken away from her.
There was a lot to do that day and Martha had somewhat of an outburst about it.
She wanted Jesus to do something about it at once.
Jesus however understood that it wasn’t just this one incident that was upsetting Martha but that there were many things that she had allowed herself to become troubled about.
This word here that Jesus is using with Martha careful and troubled is the Greek word merimna and it is a strong word with many implications most of which pertain to the thoughts of the mind
To be drawn in different directions
To be thoughtful with anxiety about things pertaining to this earthly life
To have an anxious concern, based on apprehension about possible danger or misfortune
To be greatly worried, to be very distressed
To be distressed with the implication of being worn out by such an experience
To be in extreme despair, implying both anxiety and fear
To be overburdened by various distractions
A state of prolonged pressure, concern and burden
To experience great psychological pressure and anxiety
A state of mental distress, involving acute anxiety
Acute emotional distress and turbulence
Mentally disturbed and thus deeply troubled
To be at Peace is the exact opposite of to be troubled
A state of freedom from anxiety and inner turmoil
Freedom from worry
Quiet in one’s inner self
Calmness, tranquility, quiet, soothed, at rest, freedom from agitating passions and mental disturbance
Secure, safe, assured of prosperity
At ease, eased
Our well being matters to the Lord
He is very clear that when we are in this state of agitation, He says we should not be!
The Word of God is full of antidotes against worry!
Here are some of them
Isaiah 26:3…. You will keep in perfect peace all who trust in you, all whose thoughts are fixed on you!
What wonderful assurance for us believers!
He will keep us in perfect peace!
But it is for those who put their trust in the Lord and they keep their thoughts fixed on Him.
We cannot fix our minds on our circumstances and our troubles and be kept in perfect peace!
When we fix our thoughts on negative outcomes we clearly demonstrate where our trust lies. We trust that all will go wrong.
However when we fix our thoughts on Him and what He has promised us in His Word ,then the peace that Jesus left with us and gave to us, goes into supernatural effect and keeps and guards and garrisons our hearts and our minds!
Peace is a powerful force that will go to work as we put our trust in Him and fix our thoughts on Him!!
Psalm 119:165 Those who love your laws have great peace of heart and mind and do not stumble.
The New Century Bible says….Those who love your teachings will find true peace, and nothing will defeat them.
Bless His Name! If you love His Word and His teachings then you will have great peace of HEART and MIND and nothing will defeat you!
I end with this scripture again but this time from the new Living Translation. Meditate on it, obey this teaching and be at great peace!
Don't worry about anything; instead, pray about everything.
Tell God what you need, and thank him for all he has done.
Then you will experience God's peace, which exceeds anything we can understand.
His peace will guard your hearts and minds as you live in Christ Jesus.