Three Ways To Stop Worry And Start Resting
Evan Doyle | November 09, 2018
Recently, while preparing for a message about worry I decided to write down every time I caught myself worrying.
As crazy as this sounds, I started to worry that I forgot everything I worried about. Eventually, I chose to use a different example to illustrate my point.
One of the things I was worried about was my computer possibly having a virus.
I started to worry if there was something I could do to eliminate the virus. Then I began to worry if it was too late to fix the computer.
Worry is a pitfall. It traps you. It keeps your thoughts in a place of in-between.
The dialogue sounds something like this:
Is there something that can prevent or solve this?
There’s nothing that can be done.
What can I do?
It’s probably too late.
Unfortunately, the only things that progress in a state of worry are unhealthy.
WebMD describes what happens when we worry?
Difficulty swallowing, Dizziness, Dry mouth, Fast heartbeat, Fatigue, Headaches, Inability to concentrate, Irritability, Muscle aches, Muscle tension, Nausea, Nervous energy, Rapid breathing, Shortness of breath, Sweating, Trembling and twitching, Suppression of the immune system, Digestive disorders, Muscle tension, Short-term memory loss, Premature coronary artery disease, Heart attack
There is literally nothing to gain from worry.
On the other hand, I wonder what could have been gained while we were lost in worry?
What opportunities have been missed?
What joy were we robbed of?
What peace was misplaced?
What insight could we have experienced?
Worry is a thief.
Maybe you’ve heard this familiar quote, Worry is like a rocking chair; it’s always going but never gets you anywhere.
Do you sit in a place of worry? If so, there is a path toward rest.
Below are three ways to move from a place of worry into a place of rest.
1. Worry Happens When We Carry The Weight. Rest Happens When We Cast The Weight.
Psalm 55:22 (NIV)
Cast your cares on the Lord and He will sustain you; He will never let the righteous be shaken.
When I think of casting, I think of fishing. You’re probably familiar with how most fishing works, but typically a fisherman will cast a line out and then reel it back in.
Too often, this is how we cast our worries on God. We bring it to God, wait a little bit, panic and then reel it back into our heart.
Casting in this passage means to throw or shed. Imagine a fisherman throwing his entire pole as far as he can into the water. He would never do that, but that is exactly what we should do with our worry.
God wants us to cast our worry onto Him and then cut the line.
2. Worry Happens When We Refuse To Be Humble. Rest Happens When We Realize We Need Help.
1 Peter 5:5-6 (NIV)
All of you, clothe yourselves with humility toward one another, because, “God opposes the proud but shows favor to the humble.” Humble yourselves, therefore, under God’s mighty hand, that he may lift you up in due time.
God’s hand is significant in response to our worries. It represents the answer to the problems our worries are often rooted in.
In God’s hand is
The Provision for our needs.
The Power for our tasks.
The Plan for our future.
It’s no coincidence that the Apostle Peter is writing about humility. Older in age at the time of this letter, Peter is encouraging his readers to put into practice now what he has learned over a lifetime.
God’s hand is the answer to everything we worry about!
Peter learned that God’s hand was strong enough to calm the storm and long enough to keep him from going under.
We too can humbly position ourselves under Gods care as we willingly place our worry into His hands.
3. Worry Happens When We Doubt. Rest Happens When We Trust.
There is a narrative that surrounding doubt and trust that sounds something like this:
Trust says God will come through.
Doubt says God is through with me.
Trust says God wants what is good.
Doubt says no good can come of this.
Trust says God will never leave me.
Doubt says God was never here in the first place.
Which voice sounds the most like yours right now?
Be encouraged, God wants to restore energy and passion to the areas that have been drained by worry.
Proverbs 3:5-6 (NIV)
Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight.
Your restoration is initiated by trusting God.
Do you ever feel like you’re just not good at trusting God? Maybe you need to look at it differently.
The key to trust rests in the one you are trusting. It’s not that we’re good at trusting, some people are just good at being trustworthy.
Trust is less about you, and more about who you are trusting.
Do you believe God is trustworthy? Has He been faithful to you? If so, take the pressure off of being someone who’s good at trusting, and settle into the fact that God is great at being trustworthy.
Matthew 11:28-30 (The MSG)
28-30 “Are you tired? Worn out? Burned out on religion? Come to me. Get away with me and you’ll recover your life. I’ll show you how to take a real rest. Walk with me and work with me—watch how I do it. Learn the unforced rhythms of grace. I won’t lay anything heavy or ill-fitting on you. Keep company with me and you’ll learn to live freely and lightly.”
Sounds good, right?
Putting God first is the way out of worry.