What keeps you up at night? You know, those nagging sometimes small, yet often, overwhelming worries that keep you from catching a full night of zzz’s. Chances are you found a few worries of your own up there in the worry cloud I created.
I can’t say it’s a fun exercise, but creating a worry cloud is very useful. Seeing all your worldly worries in black and white is eye opening. Before you give your worries to the Lord, you have to know what they are, right?
Take a few minutes today and create your own worry cloud. Wordle is a free resource or you can just make a list with trusty pen and paper. I made a personal worry cloud, too. Of course, I spent way too much time trying to make the colors and font look pretty. Because if your worries look good then maybe they aren’t as bad as they seem?!?
Once you’ve made your worry cloud, I encourage you to read Matthew 6:25 – 34. In these verses, Jesus tells us over and over ‘Do not worry’. Yet, here we are talking about worries. I have two personal applications from this text. The first, comes from seeing my worries laid out before me.
If someone were to ask you ‘Where do you get your identity?’ how would you answer? Hang out in Christian circles long enough and chances are you end up with a pretty quick answer like mine, ‘Oh, I’m a child of God first, a wife, mother, daughter, friend’, and so on down the line…
I truly believe I am a child of God. But, my worry cloud tells me I may not find my identity through Jesus Christ alone.
My second application is worry vs. trust. If I truly trust in the Lord, trust in Him completely to provide for my every need, then I wouldn’t have a worry cloud at all.
Matthew 6:33 is one of the very first verses I committed to memory. I was about nine years old and learned the scripture as the traditional camp song Seek Ye First. Singing the song, over and over, made Jesus’ words easy to remember.
But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness,
and all these things will be given to you as well.
Sometime later, I memorized verse 34 too:
Therefore do not worry about tomorrow,
for tomorrow will worry about itself.
Each day has enough trouble of its own.
I’ve known these verses almost my entire life. You’d think I understand by now what they mean! In the margins of my Bible next to these verses I have written ‘worry is the world’s substitute for prayer’. Here is my prayer for you and me as we cast all our cares on the Lord.
Steep your life in God-reality, God-initiative, God-provisions.
Don’t worry about missing out.
You’ll find all your everyday human concerns will be met.
Give your entire attention to what God is doing right now,
and don’t get worked up about what may or may not happen tomorrow.
God will help you deal with whatever
hard things come up when the time comes.
Matthew 6: 33 – 34 (The Message)