We live in such a stress-filled society today. We could write these words on the tombstones of many Americans: Hurried, worried, buried. We’re constantly in motion, going from one thing to another, from one worry to another. We can get so stressed out that we’re almost immobilized. Sometimes worry can absolutely paralyze a person’s life.
But as my friend Max Lucado has said, “Your anxiety decreases as your understanding of your Father increases.” That is really the heart of the matter.
On July 24, 2008, my wife and I heard the news that no parent ever wants to hear. We found out that our son had suddenly left us for Heaven. Anxiety, panic, worry, and fear all crashed in at the same time. And as I bent beneath the weight of it, I honestly wondered if I could survive such a thing. As a pastor, I had spoken with people over the years who had lost children, but when it happened to me, I honestly wondered if I could handle it.
But God was there for me. And one of the reasons I have continued to preach since that day is because of that, because God was there. If the Lord had not come through for me on that day, I would have given up preaching. But He did come through for me.
I’m not saying it has been easy. We still miss our son, of course, and we still feel deep pain. But we have found the truth of Philippians 4:6–7: “Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God; and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus” (NKJV).
Apply this truth, and turn your worries into prayers.
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