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THE BOOK OF GOD'S PROMISES

Overcoming Worry and Anxiety

By J. Stephen Lang

CBN.com -- Christian author William R. Inge defined worry as "interest paid on trouble before it becomes due." Worry is the great plague of life, both for believers and unbelievers. It crosses all educational and economic and racial boundaries. It is human to worry, to fret, to fear something in the future.

Worry may be normal, but it also sinful. "Sinful?" you say. Definitely. The Bible is brimming over with promises to God's people that we need not worry, for God -- not we ourselves -- are in control of the universe.

Happy are those who fear the LORD . Yes, happy are those who delight in doing what he commands.

When darkness overtakes the godly, light will come bursting in. They are generous, compassionate, and righteous. All goes well for those who are generous, who lend freely and conduct their business fairly. Such people will not be overcome by evil circumstances. Those who are righteous will be long remembered. They do not fear bad news; they confidently trust the LORD to care for them. They are confident and fearless and can face their foes triumphantly.

Psalm 112:1-8

Give your burdens to the LORD, and he will take care of you. He will not permit the godly to slip and fall.

Psalm 55:22

As pressure and stress bear down on me, I find joy in your commands.

Psalm 119:143

Worry weighs a person down; an encouraging word cheers a person up.

Proverbs 12:15

Jesus himself, the Son of God, spoke many times on the subject of worry. Jesus chose to depend completely on his Father, and he promised his followers that they too could -- and should -- devote their lives to something more fruitful than worrying.

"I tell you, don't worry about everyday life -- whether you have enough food, drink, and clothes. Doesn't life consist of more than food and clothing? Look at the birds. They don't need to plant or harvest or put food in barns because your heavenly Father feeds them. And you are far more valuable to him than they are. Can all your worries add a single moment to your life? Of course not.

"And why worry about your clothes? Look at the lilies and how they grow. They don't work or make their clothing, yet Solomon in all his glory was not dressed as beautifully as they are. And if God cares so wonderfully for flowers that are here today and gone tomorrow, won't he more surely care for you? You have so little faith!

"So don't worry about having enough food or drink or clothing. Why be like the pagans who are so deeply concerned about these things? Your heavenly Father already knows all your needs, and he will give you all you need from day to day if you live for him and make the Kingdom of God your primary concern.

"So don't worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will bring its own worries. Today's trouble is enough for today."

Matthew 6:25-34

The apostle Paul, in the following passage, promised Christians that they could dispel worry by fixing their minds on good things, not on their own worries. It is one of the classic Bible passages on worry, one that people should engrave on their hearts.

Don't worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need and thank him for all he has done. If you do this, you will experience God's peace, which is far more wonderful than the human mind can understand. His peace will guard your hearts and minds as you live in Christ Jesus.

And now, dear brothers and sisters, let me say one more thing as I close this letter. Fix your thoughts on what is true and honorable and right. Think about things that are pure and lovely and admirable. Think about things that are excellent and worthy of praise.

Philippians 4:6-8

The Book of God's Promises -- Copyright, 1999 by J. Stephen Lang. All rights reserved, used with permission.

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