Louie Giglio has recently published a book about worry, Winning the War on Worry. One of the things he cites in that book is a study from Penn State University that found that 91% of the things that we worry about never happen. No wonder Jesus told his followers in the Sermon on the Mount, “Do not worry.”
Dan Overmeyer shared a devotional from Chuck Swindoll, originally published in his book, “Come Before Winter.” I first read that book in 1985. (The year that Jonathon was born.) I am still working on learning the great lesson of this chapter. If it is helpful to you, I would like to share it below:
Each morning you awaken to an unpredictable set of hours filled with surprises and trials and anxieties. You know before your feet ever touch the floor you are in for another who-knows-what day. You could be in an accident on the freeway, fired from the job, the victim of a personal attack, mistreated, robbed, slandered, or threatened with a lawsuit. Sounds pretty bleak, but it’s true. Happens to hundreds like us daily.
Living in the fear of that brings trauma . . . internal stress prompted by worry. Many a soul starts priming the pump of worry even before they get the morning paper. All sorts of energy is burned up as the mind runs up and down the dark alleys of imaginary dread.
“We must get rid of Fear!” advised Thomas Carlyle. Sure . . . but how? How do you break the habit? The same way you stay in the dentist’s chair when you’re tempted to get antsy—you trust. You consciously and willfully abandon yourself to Someone who is trustworthy. It certainly worked for David. He wrote:
When I am afraid,
I will put my trust in You. (Psalm 56:3)
Meaning what? Meaning this: “I will lean on, rely on, rest in, surrender to, depend on, relax.” How can I do this? By being convinced that God is totally trustworthy. He cares. He’s reliable. He isn’t clumsy. Or unskilled. Or out to get me. Or only working part time. Or available just to adults. When He says, “This won’t hurt a bit, trust me,” He means it.
Excerpt taken from Come before Winter and Share My Hope by Charles R. Swindoll. Copyright © 1985, 1988, 1994 by Charles R. Swindoll, Inc. All rights reserved worldwide.