Tuesday, September 01, 2009

How Much Shall I Worry?

Cookie is concerned; she’s written to her list of friends saying, “No more negative emails. I refuse to drown under this political stuff.” Now Cookie has fewer email forwards to read. So far, at least, she’s grateful to be just “left alone.”

At the Wednesday Friendship Group at church the majority of people effectively cut off any discussion that ties current events with Bible prophecy or even Jesus’ teaching about troubles coming at the “end of the age.” If there would have been any concerns or questions they didn’t see the light of day. Is it apathy, carelessness, or acceptable?

Curtis wants to keep informed. He probably spends too much time researching news sites on the Internet. He listens to the a.m. news radio program and sits through an hour and a half of evening news on the TV. There’s no smile on his face these days. Friends are quick to change the subject when he joins them at the coffee house.

What’s a normal Christian supposed to do? Is it one extreme or the other? Is there a middle-ground that would be mentally healthy and spiritually adequate?

If Cookie doesn’t listen to anything she is short-changing herself. Her prayer life will omit vital requests for her own spiritual growth and protection. She won’t recognize God’s hand of provision in this area of life.

If Curtis doesn’t realize that God has something for him to learn about prayer and trust he’s going to miss wonderful peace of mind. Blessings and miracles, large and small, completely escape his notice.

Our responsibility is to show respect to our Maker. He didn’t put each of us here at this time and place just so we will be ignorant and disobedient. He didn’t send Jesus, His only Son to Earth just so people would have a controversy to keep theologians and atheists occupied.

There’s time for trivia; how about some time to read the Gospels of the New Testament. What was important to Jesus? What did he emphasize? Were his teachings just cute little stories?

What did those early believers do? Did they wring their hands over the political problems? Did they hide out at home? Did they speak up to unbelievers?

How much shall I worry? There’s plenty to worry about: globalization would take away individual rights and freedoms, universal health care is very complicated — how much power do we want the government to have? On and on…..

Three words give us a direction: pray, plan, prepare.

Prayer is not mumbling a written poem, it’s actual communication with the Lord Himself. Acknowledging His love, His power, then we realize that His reproof is meant to bring us to repentance and rebirth.

Planning involves gaining information. What assets do we already have in place? What do we need to do? What do we need to learn how to do?

Preparing means being able to provide for our own families. Government handouts will not cover the needs of everybody, everywhere. Preparing means getting ready, spiritually, emotionally, and all those other aspects of living. Be practical and prudent.

Both Cookie and Curtis can pray and plan and prepare with God’s help.

Let’s pray for wisdom and direction, ”Show us what to do.” Let’s ask for physical strength, and add, “Show us, Lord, how to cooperate with the health and healing You’re giving us.” Then pray about others. “Show us what to say, who to say it to, when to say it.”

God wants to bless each of us!

by Elaine Hardt ©2009