Worry-warts

It is something we all are guilty of on a daily basis – some much more than others. Go take a look at two previous posts on Fear and the process of Letting Go…this post will tie in well with them.

Every situation we encounter in life has the potential to go in two directions: either positive, or negative. Compulsive worry-warts (like me, especially when it comes to our baby) see the danger, the potential problems arising a mile ahead of the event itself. Taking the baby on an outing, I worry that he will cry inconsolably. Feeding him, I worry that he isn’t getting enough milk. During the day, I worry that he isn’t getting enough sleep. Although it is hard for me to admit this, this process is a huge waste of my time and efforts. Not only is it unproductive and, like fear, based in the non-existent future – it also leads to sickness and sadness.

So Jesus tells me the following today:

“So do not worry or be anxious about tomorrow, for tomorrow will have worries and anxieties of its own. Sufficient for each day is its own trouble.” Matt 6:34

I need to let go of the aspects of any situation that are beyond my control, and focus only on living in the moment. His grace is sufficient for anything that could come my way. I must only focus on His provision, not the potential problem.

“But He said to me, My grace (My favor and loving-kindness and mercy) is enough for you [sufficient against any danger and enables you to bear the trouble manfully];” 2 Cor 12:9

Without worry, we will experience abundant joy and light living. Our minds will be filled with peace. Some last encouraging words if we let go of our own yokes and trust in the abundant provision of Jesus:

“For My yoke is wholesome (useful, good—not harsh, hard, sharp, or pressing, but comfortable, gracious, and pleasant), and My burden is light and easy to be borne.” Mat 11:30

Letting go…

Why is it so difficult to let go? To forget about our own plans and ways of doing things and just let God take over?

I don’t give Him enough of a chance to actually show me what He can do in my life. I hold onto this urge to control every aspect of my life so tightly, that He cannot be the God who is able to do more than I could ever dream or imagine (Eph 3:20).

“God is able to [carry out His purpose and] do superabundantly, far over and above all that we [dare] ask or think [infinitely beyond our highest prayers, desires, thoughts, hopes, or dreams]” Eph 3:20

God has all the solutions you will ever need. Every answer you need is wrapped up in Jesus. If we just allow Him to set the pace and guide us in our everyday lives, we will be amazed at the results!

“Do not fret or have any anxiety about anything, but in every circumstance and in everything, by prayer and petition (definite requests), with thanksgiving, continue to make your wants known to God. And God’s peace which transcends all understanding shall garrison and mount guard over your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus.” Philippians 4:6-7

If we give our worries to God and allow Him to take care of us, we will experience a peace that far transcends all understanding. Suddenly our lives won’t be governed by this inexhaustible need to control every detail, but we will rather experience a wonderfully liberating joy and peace.

I need this in my life!

God’s abundant provision

We serve a God who wants to give us more than enough. That means He does not just want to fulfill your basic needs, but He wants to go beyond that and liberally supply in all your needs. The word liberally means to give bountifully, generously and plentifully. It means to give grandly and wholeheartedly, without holding back.

“And my God will liberally supply (fill to the full) your every need according to His riches in glory in Christ Jesus.” Phil 4:19

If you want to ask God for something – go ahead and do it! You must understand His heart towards you, and how much He wants to bless you. He does not put limitations on what we may ask of Him – He tells us we may ask Him ‘whatever‘. That means ANYTHING!

“[Yes] I will grant [I Myself will do for you] whatever you shall ask in My Name [as presenting all that I AM].” John 14:14

He wants to provide for us so that we may enjoy life. We don’t need to walk through life with a ‘just enough’ mentality – we serve a God who believes in abundance! The following two verses especially prove this:

“…nor to set their hopes on uncertain riches, but on God, Who richly and ceaselessly provides us with everything for [our] enjoyment.” 1 Tim 6:17

“I came that they may have and enjoy life, and have it in abundance (to the full, till it overflows).” John 10:10

Never let anyone convince you otherwise! For further reading on the provision of God see the following entries:

MORE than enough

God takes provision and blessing to another level. He does not just merely supply your needs, but He goes over and beyond the norm in order to bless you!

In Psalm 23:2 we don’t just read He leads us to pastures, but He specifically leads us to the best, most tender and greenest pastures (the most delicious!).  Later on in the Psalm we read that our cup is not only filled, it runs over (v. 5).

Other verses that testifies about the God of MORE than enough:

“Instead of bronze I will bring gold, and instead of iron I will bring silver; and instead of wood, bronze, and instead of stones, iron.” Is 60:17

“And my God will liberally supply (fill to the full) your every need according to His riches in glory in Christ Jesus.” Phil 4:19

“Now to Him Who, by (in consequence of) the [action of His] power that is at work within us, is able to [carry out His purpose and] do superabundantly, far over and above all that we [dare] ask or think [infinitely beyond our highest prayers, desires, thoughts, hopes, or dreams]…” Eph 3:20

This last verse describes God’s provision as being superabundant, more than we can ever dare to ask for or think! If you can imagine something good in your life, God will go infinitely beyond this and surprise you with His goodness.

The Door (Part 3)

I want to continue the story about the Door and the Shepherd in this post.  We’ve been busy in John 10, and today I want to look at verse 10 specifically.

“The thief comes only in order to steal and kill and destroy. I came that they may have and enjoy life, and have it in abundance (to the full, till it overflows).” John 10:10

In this verse Jesus clearly sets himself apart from stealing, killing and destroying.  This is such an important part of His character that we need to grasp and solidify in our hearts.  We must know the heart of God towards His flock.  Jesus also refers to Himself as the good shepherd in the next verse (John 10:11).  There are a few more verses in the Bible regarding God’s flock and His heart towards them:

“The Lord is my Shepherd [to feed, guide, and shield me], I shall not lack.  He makes me lie down in [fresh, tender] green pastures; He leads me beside the still and restful waters.” Ps 23:1-2

“I will feed them with good pasture, and upon the high mountains of Israel shall their fold be; there shall they lie down in a good fold, and in a fat pasture shall they feed upon the mountains of Israel.” Ezekiel 34:14

“And I will make them and the places round about My hill a blessing, and I will cause the showers to come down in their season; there shall be showers of blessing [of good insured by Gods favor].” Ezekiel 34:26

As God’s sheep we can expect life in abundance – so much life that it overflows! We can expect provision, rest and peace in God.  We can expect goodness and showers of blessings and favor. I don’t see any reflection of a bad shepherd in the verses above – just amazing kindness and goodness.