A few weeks ago, we attended a children’s event at church. It was an interactive worship event for children under the age of 12. After a time of worship and a brief message, the children were sent off to different stations where they could have a bit more of a hands-on experience to what they were learning. this time, I was privileged to be able to lead one of the stations. Since the overall theme was about worrying, my station was about how we can combat worrying by God giving us peace. Each of the children were able to play with a calming jar while we talked about how worrying can be a lot like a storm of anxiety (we shook up the jars and watched the glitter swirl around inside) but that God can give us peace and calm the storm and let it settle (just like the glitter settled on the bottom of the jars when we placed them back down).
The children were mesmerized by the glitter, and someone commented it was more fun to “worry” by shaking it up than have peace by watching it settle. Other children decided to play a game and stack the calming jars into a tower (thankfully they were made in plastic bottles), and then watch it topple over. Desperately trying to keep them on track with what they were learning, I told them they could stack their worries but God could knock them down.
We packed up and sent them off to the next station, but something about that tower stuck with me. Maybe because the idea of stacking worries resonates with me. Worries do mount up, don’t they?
Sometimes it is hard to think of worries as sin. Because everyone does it. But just because everyone does it does not make it right. The Bible doesn’t explicitly say that worry is a sin, but usually worry gives way to fear and fear gives way to lack of trust. And not trusting God is a big problem.
Earlier today I was doing some laundry. The kids were noisily playing upstairs so when I went in to the laundry room, I was craving a moment of peace. I shut the door and transferred the clean clothes to the dryer and then refilled the washer. I don’t have the fancy pants appliances, with all the bells and whistles. Just your regular, plain Jane top loading variety. Since I wasn’t quite ready to head back upstairs, I stood over the washer and watched it fill, water splashing over the clothes. (Yes, I know you’re supposed to wait until it’s filled to add the clothes, but I never do.) I spotted my favorite shirt and noticed in some areas, when the water would splash over it would soak through but it other areas it didn’t. Instead, it repelled the water and as it splashed over the fabric it beaded up and rolled right off. I thought that was a lot like my worries. Sometimes worries are long lasting, and they soak into your soul like the water to the fabric. And other times, they leave as quickly as they come and roll right off.
Worries are a constant in my life and I wish they weren’t. They’re unbiblical. Look all over the Bible and you’ll see this truth.
1 Peter 5:7 – Give all your worries and cares to God, for he cares about you.
Proverbs 12:25 –
Philippians 4:6-7 –
Matthew 6:34 – So don’t worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will bring its own worries. Today’s trouble is enough for today.
Luke 12:25 – And which of you by being anxious can add a single hour to his span of life?
Worrying happens because there isn’t peace. And worrying is the absence of trust. Someone once asked, “why do we trust God for all of eternity but we don’t trust Him with our daily lives?” Ouch.
The precious truth is that God wants to be involved in our daily lives, even the seemingly boring ones. There really isn’t a single minute of our lives that God isn’t concerned about. Anything that worries us, He cares about. Anything that doesn’t worry us, He cares about.
I don’t want to worry, even though it’s as if that’s all I know what to do. I don’t want my soul to be soaked in worry like my favorite shirt was soaked with water in the washing machine. I want to have a soul where the worries roll right off like water droplets. I want to go to God first with my worries, when there is a glittery storm brewing in my soul – and watch Him settle that glitter and give me peace. I don’t want to stack them up one by one. We don’t have to be like that, friends. We can be free.
Let go and trust in Him. When everything is spiraling. When you have lost all control. When you don’t know what to do next. When you feel your gut clench and your heart drop, when the worries start to stack, look to Him and let go – He can’t knock them down if we’re still holding on. And it’s time to let them fall.